Fall Color Report: October 20-27, 2016

Colorful American Hornbeam-FIRESPIRE in fall
Colorful American hornbeam FIRESPIRE
October 21, 2016


The cool weather and bright sunny days are doing their magic on autumn leaves at The Morton Arboretum. Sugar maples are showing orange and yellow in sunny woodlands, while reds, oranges, and yellows beginning to show all across the grounds. Even in the shady parts of the East Woods, while the trees are mostly green, the smaller sugar maples are beginning to take on their golden color.

For the latest fall color updates from the Arboretum, call the Bloom 'n Color Hotline at 630-719-7955.

East Side:

Visitor Center Parking (Parking Lot 1): Jeffersred Freeman maples are red in the medians. Yellow leaves are showing on hackberry, redbuds, Ussuri pear, and Peking lilacs. Bald-cypress trees, with their fine needles, are turning yellowish-green. Sumacs are red, with a darker red on the oak-leaved hydrangeas and hornbeams and orange on sugar maples. White pines are dropping their older yellow needles, which is normal at this time of year.

Elm, Linden and Cork-tree Collections (Parking Lot 1 to 2): Yellow leaves are appearing on cork-trees and some yellow on lindens. American elms are golden yellow, while buckeyes are yellow-brown.

Northern Illinois and Midwest Collections (Parking Lot 2): Yellow can be seen on the leaves of pawpaw, redbuds, bur oak, shagbark hickory, and hackberries. Bitternut hickories are turning golden yellow. Flowering dogwoods show reddish-purple in their leaves, with bright red fruits. Some pale red has appeared in red maples, while sugar maples and black maples are showing orange. Viburnums are turning a dark maroon red.

Frost Hill (Parking Lot 3): Hackberries and redbuds are yellow. The tall, slender sugar maples show orange in their tops and sides where they have been exposed to the sun. The view from the hill overlooking Northern Illinois and the DuPage River valley features yellow with touches of red in the sumacs in the North Illinois Collection. Magnolia and beech trees to the west are yellow. Pines on the top of the hill are dropping their older yellow needles, which is normal in fall. Japanese zelkova is beginning to turn a lighter green.

Crabapple Lake and Rose Family Collection (Parking Lot 4): Fruits on mountain-ash are reddish with leaves beginning to turn yellow and orange. Honey-locusts are yellow. Crabapple fruits are starting to mature and turn red, orange and yellow. Black walnuts’ leaves are dropping, as are their large green nuts.

Crowley Marsh and Magnolia Collection (Parking Lot 5): Walnuts are turning yellow and losing their leaves. Bur oaks and redbuds are turning yellow. Red oaks are starting to turn color. Gray dogwood is taking on a purple color. Black willows in the marsh are turning yellow, as are tulip-trees.

Buckeye Collection (Parking Lot 6): Buckeyes are mostly bare, though bottlebrush buckeyes are turning yellow. Cork-trees, honey-locusts, redbuds, walnuts, elms, lindens and witch-hazels near Spikerush Marsh are yellow. Along the woodland edges, cottonwoods’ leaves are drying and dropping.

Maple and Oak Collections (Parking Lots 7 and 8): The Maple Collection is the go-to place to take a walk this week, with maples from around the world showing off their fall colors. Some oaks have a few yellow leaves, though most remain green.

East Woods (Parking Lots 8 to 15): Walnuts, black cherries, elms, redbuds, lindens, and ironwoods are turning yellow. Bitternut-hickories are golden yellow. High in the tree canopy where the sun reaches the leaves, sugar maples show orange on their tops and exposed sides Parking Lots 9 and 10. Shrubs and saplings between Parking Lots 10 and 13 are just starting to turn yellow-green.

Big Rock Visitor station (Parking Lot 13): Woodland sugar maples are showing orange and yellow at their tops and sides where leaves are exposed to the sun. Walnuts, lindens, black cherries, and ironwoods along the trails are turning yellow.

Maple and Beech Collections (Parking Lot 14): This is a convenient spot to park and walk through the Maple and Beech Collections to see fall color on trees from around the world. The lone sugar maple at P14 is a splendid orange.

East Woods (Parking Lot 15): Sugar maples are showing yellow and some orange where the sun reaches their tops. Smaller maples in the understory are turning yellow-green.

Appalachia, China and Japan Collections (Parking Lots 16 to 18): Flowering dogwoods have reddish-purple leaves and bright red fruits. Sugar maples are showing orange with some yellows on the sides where leaves are in more shade. Silver maples are turning yellow. Pawpaws are starting to turn bright yellow in the sun. Miyabe maples are yellow-green. Some yellow and red is showing on elms in the China Collection. Asian maples to the south of the road are beginning to turn pale yellow with hints of red.

Sumac Collection (Parking Lot 18): Various shades of red can be seen on sumacs from North America and China.

West Side:

West Side Main Route:

River Bridge and Ozark Collection: Peking lilacs, wild hydrangeas, and American beeches are turning yellow-green. A sugar maple is orange. Silver maples, hackberries, ironwoods, and spicebush are yellow. Bitternut hickory is golden-yellow and tupelo is turning red.

Crabapple and Europe Collections and retention basin (Parking Lot 19): Swamp and silky dogwoods are turning purple. The top of the Miyabe maple along Joy Path to the west is turning yellow. Crabapples are turning yellow and orange and beginning to show mature fruit.

Founder’s Grove (Parking Lot 20): Redbuds, ironwoods, and witch-hazels are turning yellow-green.

Thornhill Education Center (Parking Lot 21): Marmo and Jeffersred Freeman maples are showing red on their leaves. Redbuds, catalpas, honey-locusts, elms, and sycamores are turning yellow. Sumacs are red.

Daffodil Glade (Parking Lots 22 and 23): A few walnuts, honey-locusts, elms, bur oaks, redbuds and ironwoods are turning yellow.

Pine Hill (Parking Lot 24): Walnuts, basswoods and redbuds are showing yellow leaves; bitternut-hickory shows golden-yellow.

Schulenberg Prairie (Parking Lot 25): Grasses are turning gold, red, and purple. Walnut trees are dropping yellow leaves. Elms, hickories, and black cherries are yellow. Sumacs are red.

Sterling Pond (Parking Lots 25 and 29): Sugar maples are orange. Yellow is showing on hackberries, ironwoods, redbuds, and bur oaks.

Birch Collection (Parking Lots 30 and 31): Birches and hornbeams have some yellow leaves. The falling leaves show off the attractive and varied bark of birch trees.

Nut Tree Collection (Parking Lot 31): Walnut leaves are turning yellow-green and dropping. Pecan trees are beginning to turn shades of yellow and brown along with green.

DuPage River and Willow Island (Parking Lot 32): Sugar maples at the river bridge are orange. Maples along the Arbordale fence are turning yellow-green. Freeman maples across the river are showing turning reddish purple color. Bur oaks and redbuds are yellow.

Godshalk Meadow (Parking Lot 33): Miyabe maples are turning yellow-green.