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Fall foliage season in Maine nears its end

Northern, western, and central Maine are displaying peak color changes, between 70 and 100 percent, and all of Maine is seeing high to near-total leaf drop.
Credit: Halda Stout

MAINE, USA — The final foliage report of the season from the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation, and Forestry (DACF) has come. On Wednesday, the Department's report shows the majority of the state has is past peak foliage conditions. 

Northern, western, and central Maine are displaying peak color changes, between 70 and 100 percent, and all of Maine is seeing high to near-total leaf drop.

“Mother Nature decided to throw in her two cents to prove she’s still in charge of all things foliage by making this one of the quickest foliage seasons I’ve seen in all my years of reporting,” Gale Ross, Maine’s fall foliage coordinator, said in the report. “While you will still find pockets of green, mostly our mighty oaks, along the immediate coast and southern Maine, Mother Nature is saying farewell to another fall foliage season.”

As the DACF assures, however, even "past peak" is beautiful and photo-worthy. 

Conditions in southern and coastal Maine will still be colorful and at peak heading into the long weekend. 

RELATED: Foliage chair-lift rides, pandemic winter preps underway at Sunday River

This year, the fall foliage season came a little early in Maine due to the drought.

"The trees have been under moisture stress with the drought. I think that has helped contribute to the trees changing earlier but I've been pleasantly surprised by its color, the brilliancy is great,"  Kevin Smith a plant physiologist with the U.S. Forest Service, said last week.

DACF says typically, northern Maine reaches peak conditions the last week of September into the first week of October. The Department says the rest of the state’s color progression will usually start from north to south in early to-mid-October.

“The lack of rain this summer and the early widespread frost jumpstarted the progression of foliage colors this season,” Ross said in last week's report.

While the drought caused the foliage season to come early, it didn't hinder the beauty of the foliage. 

Thanks to the Near ME tool on the NEWS CENTER Maine mobile app, we have no shortage of scenic photos to share. Keep em' coming!