Frost in AshevilleAs I stepped outside this morning, I saw something I hadn't seen in quite some time. A thin layer of frost had formed on the grass. Until now the nights had been cool in Asheville, but not quite cold enough for a frost: perfect conditions for anthocyanins and carotenoids (red and yellow pigments) to form in the leaves.
Many of Asheville's leaves are still rich with chlorophyll (green pigment), but that is all about to change. Frost causes leaves to lose their chlorophyll, revealing all the red and yellow pigments that have been building up since the nights started to cool off back in September. Asheville's foliage will peak in the next week or so, and the fall colors will be brighter than usual due to the late frost.
Although the nights have been colder, the days are still mild, with sunny days in the 60s forecast this week. The weather is perfect for enjoying fall foliage in Asheville.
October 20, 2008