Blossoms, buds and a frost warning?

It seems like it took forever to get spring going this year. The wet and cool conditions we’ve experienced during the late winter and early spring in Western North Carolina made it feel like winter just refused to leave our region. (But — even now — there’s a possibility of frost Thursday night, April 25.) They say that good things come to those who wait, and it must be true, because many locations are enjoying gorgeous blooming trees.

The first sign of coming change

The bright yellows of Goldenrod are now plentiful in fields and along roadways in Western North Carolina; last weekend’s cold front brought cooler and drier air into the region; and you may have noticed that some of the leaves on the trees are beginning to lose their deep green color. These first signs of the coming autumn are a welcome sight to many of us who claim fall to be our favorite season.

NC Arboretum reintroduces American chestnut to its grounds (blight resistant, this time)-attachment0

NC Arboretum reintroduces American chestnut to its grounds (blight resistant, this time)

When white folks arrived on these shores, American chestnuts were the dominant tree from Georgia to Maine; then in the early 1900s, an imported disease virtually wiped them out — an estimated 4 billion trees. Now, thanks to the American Chestnut Foundation—and its genetic improvement program—the trees are positioned to make a comeback. Here, ACF President Bryan Burhans and Natural Landscape Crew Leader Tony Morrison pose with one of the newly planted, blight-resistant young trees.