Bloom and Fall Color Reports

Fall Color Report: November 3 – November 9, 2023

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November 3, 2023

Freezing temperatures have changed the appearance of trees at The Morton Arboretum, but there is still plenty of autumn color to see, especially among the oaks and in the understory of woodlands.

As leaves fall, structures of the Arboretum’s varied trees are beginning to show, with different branching textures and bark colors. It’s also easier to spot bird nests, hornet and wasp nests, and squirrel dreys (nests made of leaves in tree branches). The predominant colors this week are yellow in the understory sugar maples in woodland areas such as the East Woods (parking lots 9 through 13 on the main driving route). In the Oak Collection (Parking Lot 8) and elsewhere, there is a wide range of colors in oaks from deep green to yellow, golden-brown, orange, and even some shades of purple and scarlet. Look for fruits of crabapples, ironwood, and persimmons as leaves drop.

Winter-themed displays of lights and evergreens are replacing the autumn displays in beds and containers around the Visitor Center and The Gerard T. Donnelly Grand Garden (Parking Lot 1) and the Thornhill Education Center (Parking Lot 21). Illumination: Tree Lights at The Morton Arboretum will open in just a few weeks. But beneath the winter displays and underneath fallen leaves in many other parts of the Arboretum are the bulbs of daffodils and other flowers, sleeping and preparing next spring’s colorful blooms.

The fall color season may be drawing toward a close, but there is still plenty of color to enjoy! Don’t let the weather keep you inside. Come out and enjoy nature’s late-season fall color.



About the Fall Color Report

The Fall Color Report is written by the Arboretum’s manager of plant records, Ed Hedborn. It is typically published on Fridays throughout the fall to give members and guests a chance to plan their weekend visits. The Arboretum also publishes a weekly Bloom Report in springtime.


Fall at The Morton Arboretum

The Morton Arboretum is more than a walk in the woods. Explore upcoming learning opportunities and events to learn more about trees and plants and to celebrate your love of nature.

Experience the Arboretum’s annual holiday light show, Illumination: Tree Lights at The Morton Arboretum, running Saturday, November 18, 2023 through Saturday, January 6, 2024. Celebrate the holidays and marvel at how light transforms a magnificent landscape during this one-of-a-kind holiday experience.

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