Why are trees in Ontario changing colour earlier than usual this fall?

By Lindsay Armstrong, Canadian Press, Ottawa Citizen, October 9, 2023

The customary reds, oranges and yellows of the trees, marking the arrival of fall, may have appeared early this year, or not at all.

The dramatic summer weather that brought wildfires in some parts of the country and heavy rain in others is being reflected in fall colours across Canada, researchers say.

...Sean Thomas, a professor of forest ecology at the University of Toronto, says there is anecdotal evidence to suggest that smoke from wildfires in northern Ontario this summer may have triggered trees to reveal their colours prematurely.

...He said there is lots of colour in much of Ontario this season, but added there is reason to believe that ongoing impacts of climate change will see fall colours diminish in the coming years.

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