Sourwood bright red in the Smokies

Tom HarringtonOur Town Outdoors

Lead Cove Trail (B-E)


  • Blue Asters – Some – Mostly at peak bloom – several different varieties of them
  • Coreopsis (1) – Past peak bloom.
  • Erect Golden Rod – Many – Mostly at peak bloom.
  • White Snake Root – Some – Mostly past peak bloom.
  • White Top Asters – Many ++ – At peak bloom.


Because of limited lighting when I was on this trail, I was not able to see much colorful foliage in the trees.

On the ground there were colorful leaves from these trees: Beech, Frazier Magnolia, Red Maple, Red Oak and Sourwood.

Bote Mountain Trail (From Lead Cove Trail to Finely Cane Trail)


  • Blue/purple asters – Many – Most appear to be at peak bloom (a number of different species of them).
  • Coreopsis – Few – Past peak bloom.
  • Curtiss Milkwort – (3) – At or slightly past peak bloom (still colorful).
  • Erect Goldenrod – Many – At higher elevations at peak bloom. In lower elevations past peak bloom.
  • False Fox Glove – (1) – Past peak bloom.
  • Great Lobelia – Few – At or slightly beyond peak bloom.
  • Heal All – (2) – Appear to be at peak bloom (very small).
  • Mountain Gentian – Some – Just starting to bloom.
  • White Snakeroot – Some – Past peak bloom lower elevations – at or just beyond peak bloom higher elevations.
  • White Top Aster – Many – Mostly at peak bloom.


Some of the Sourwood have brilliant red foliage first 3/4th of a mile from the Lead Cove Trail junction. There are a few Blueberry, Red Maple and Red Oak that are changing to their fall wardrobe.

Curtiss Milkwort

Mountain Gentian

Finely Cane Trail (B-E)


  • Blue/purple Azaleas – Some – Mostly at peak bloom (several varieties of them).
  • Erect Goldenrod – Some – At or just beyond peak bloom.
  • White Snakeroot – Some – Mostly past peak bloom but still some at peak bloom.
  • White Top Aster – Many – Mostly at peak bloom.


Most of the foliage on the trees is still green with some yellow scattered around. In the first mile there are some yellow Beech leaves on the trail.

Tom Harrington is a regular hiker who reports on wildflowers in the Smokies.


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