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Fall Colors Peak at Chimney Rock, Lower Elevations Peak Next Week

Wednesday, October 24th, 2012

ASHEVILLE NC – Peak fall colors are on the horizon in Chimney Rock and Lake Lure. Leaf peepers aiming their sights on the best color should plan a visit to see the area’s higher elevations over the next week. Lower elevations are expected to reach peak during the first week of November and could last into the second week if weather conditions are ideal. Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park offers 75-mile views overlooking Lake Lure, five scenic hiking trails with vistas like Exclamation Point and the Opera Box, rocking climbing and an annual fall photography workshop. Park admission is only $15 adult, $7 youth (ages 6-15) and free for kids under six. Weekly fall color and wildflower reports are available to help you plan your visit at chimneyrockpark.com.

Fall Color Report, 10-24-2012:

The higher elevations of Chimney Rock and Lake Lure have exploded with vibrant leaf colors, displaying remarkable color around the Chimney level.  Hiking the Skyline trail from the Chimney to Exclamation Point is quite spectacular! Golden yellows have appeared in the buckeyes, birch, beech and walnut trees.  The hickories are also starting to turn yellow. Sourwoods and some dogwoods are still bright red, and the maples are adding red to the mountains.

Some fall wildflowers, such as goldenrod and asters, continue to dot the Park’s colorful landscape. The remaining areas of green in lower elevations should benefit from an ideal 10-day forecast of sunny days and cool nights, causing a beautiful transformation of autumn colors to spread down the mountainsides. Leaf peepers visiting Chimney Rock over the next week will be rewarded with peak color at the higher elevations, with lower elevations reaching peak around the first week of November.

Turning Fall Leaves Into Garden Gold

Friday, October 28th, 2011

ASHEVILLE NC – The morning air feels crisp. The leaves are changing colors. Fall is in the air. That means raking!

Rather than picking up, bagging, and disposing of your fall leaves, consider using them in your yard. Here are three simple options to turn your fall Rather than picking up, bagging, and disposing of your fall leaves, consider using them in your yard. leaves into garden gold:

  1. Carry the raked leaves to your compost bin. Mix in the leaves using a shovel. Keep in mind that too many leaves may slow down the composting process. If you have a lot of leaves, pile the extras near your compost pile or bin and mix them in slowly over the next several months as you add “green” debris, such as fruit and vegetable scraps.
  2. Shred the leaves with a bagging mower. Use the leaf bits as mulch around trees and plants or to cover your garden for winter. Leaf mulch protects the soil and the beneficial creatures that live in it from the harsh winter temperatures.
  3. Forget the rake. Use your mulching mower to shred the leaves onto your lawn. These leaf bits provide protective cover for the grass plants and will decompose by spring. This is perfect if your lawn has only a few younger trees. Your grass will initially look like it has been “sprinkled” with leaf bits. If it looks “frosted” and not “sprinkled,” you are going to have to rake!

If you still have extra leaves after you’ve composted and mulched, recycle
them at the Buncombe County Landfill.

Yard trimmings, brush, and leaves are accepted during regular hours. Leaves must be separated from brush. If you carry leaves to the landfill in plastic bags, you will be required to remove the leaves from the bags. No plastic bags can be dumped in the yard waste area.

There is a fee of $20 per ton (prorated) for yard waste. If you have questions about yard waste drop-off, call 250-5462.