Contrary to popular belief, the best part of autumn isn't that sweater weather has officially begun or that it's finally the start of Pumpkin Spice Latte season—it's the arrival of the vibrant red, orange, and yellow leaves we see cover the trees. These colors are the true sign that fall has arrived, but this year they might not be arriving as quickly as we'd like them to.
According to The Weather Channel, this year's fall foliage season could be several weeks delayed across the United States. Warmer-than-average temperatures, especially warmer average temperatures overnight, are the reason behind this year's delayed season.
"Warm, sunny days may be good for vibrant fall foliage, but only if accompanied by cool nights," The Weather Channel explains. Since Earth's average temperatures have been quite warm this year, this means there will be a delay on fall officially beginning. However, most of the country will only be seeing about a week's delay to the start of color-changing leaves.
We're still expected to get an eye-popping show when leaves reach their peak due to the wet summers we've had across the U.S. An important factor in vibrant and healthy fall foliage is also soil moisture—both drought and excessive rainfall could be a detrimental factor to whether or not we get a spectacular foliage season.
And, on the bright side, this means one less week (or more) of raking leaves, potentially, so there's that.
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