Thursday, September 23, 2010
From: Press Office
Date: September 23, 2010 9:02:52 AM PDT
Subject: NATIONAL-NEWS-RELEASE: Forest Service Begins the Fall Colors Season with 2010 Hotline
USDA Forest Service Press Release
Release No. 1017
201 14th St.,SW,Washington, D.C.20024
Forest Service Begins the Fall Colors Season with 2010 Hotline
WASHINGTON, Sept. 23, 2010 - USDA Forest Service officials have turned on the Fall Colors
2010 Hotline - 1-800-354-4595 - and will use Twitter, Facebook and blogging to provide users
with the latest information about fall foliage color changes on Forest Service lands.
"Thousands of people take trips each autumn on national forests to see the spectacular show
of colors," said Tom Tidwell, Chief of the U.S. Forest Service. "Our national forests offer
some of the country's best vistas to view fall colors and magnificent landscapes, and they
offer an ideal setting for families to get outdoors and learn about trees and changing
Changing fall colors also bring positive economic impacts to local economies and the tourism
industry. For example, in New England alone, the fall foliage attracts an estimated $8
billion annually to area inns, restaurants, and local shops.
Forest Service employees are keeping tabs on the changing hues. The Fall Colors 2010 Web
site has links to individual forest fall colors sites and suggestions on how to get kids
excited about the season. The site also includes Frequently Asked Questions about why leaves
change colors and what happens after the leaves fall.
"In the temperate zones, the biggest stresses that trees face are changes of seasons," said
Kevin Smith, a Forest Service plant physiologist and an expert on trees. "The fall foliage
color change is a milestone during the process of this natural cycle. And trees handle it
Forest Service officials indicate that general summer weather conditions experienced this
year are not expected to influence the timing and intensity of leaf color. What is of
particular importance is the timing and frequency of fall frosts.
The peak season for fall viewing in most national forests normally begins in late September
and continues through early November. However, the specific timing and length of the fall
color season is affected by autumn weather patterns that are often difficult to forecast.
Consult local forests for best foliage times in your area.
The mission of the USDA Forest Service is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity
of the Nation's forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations.
The Agency manages 193 million acres of public land, provides assistance to State and
private landowners, and maintains the largest forestry research organization in the world.
NOTE TO EDITORS: To schedule an interview with Kevin Smith, contact the Forest Service Press
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