“It’s beautiful, just beautiful.” That’s what Elmira native Laurie Venetucci who now lives in Illinois said while looking at the views over Harris Hill today. She comes back to visit this each year around this time to get a glimpse of the spectacular colors that us in the Twin Tiers are lucky to see, but this year things are slightly delayed.
Ian Mclaughlin the naturalist at the Tanglewood nature center says that this year will be different than last year when it comes to the vibrancy of colors. “I think last year was pretty spectacular, it’s gonna be hard to top last year because in the super hot dry conditions you get some really amazing pops of color, so I think the foliage will be around longer to look at, it won’t be as good as last year.”
But Mclaughlin also says not to be too surprised in the next few weeks. Because of the warmer weather we’ve been experiencing the Chlorophyll in the trees has still been producing and is still working and thus we are unable to see the nice bright vibrant colors we come to expect this time of year.
Most of the issue is the species of trees that are native to the area, many of them only turn yellow and brown before falling from the trees, but once the maples get started things will be changing. “I think we’re going to be pleasantly surprised, cause the maples are really late this year so a lot of the bright pops of color we get are from the maple trees, cause we live in an oak hickory forest which is a lot more yellows and browns normally with the oaks and the hickories but, maples are surprisingly late this year.” Mclaughlin said, but he also stresses that because of the warmer weather later this year the peak color is delayed by about a week and a half to two weeks.
Some are out just enjoying the nicer weather and taking the views from the trees as an added bonus. Jamie Ziegler a native to Florida says she definitely appreciates this warmer weather. “Well we love the weather, it’s definitely nice to get out longer with the kids, the colors it seems like they’re just now beginning to turn, it looks gorgeous here.”
If you’re wondering when the peak time will be for colors this year Mclaughlin says he expects peak in the next week and a half to two weeks, but that it’s all dictated by Mother Nature.