On Wednesday June 23 my wife and I had a rare day off together during the week, so we went hiking on Grandfather Mountain. We took the Nuwati and Cragway trails from the Blue Ridge Parkway. Time constraint allowed us only to hike to Top Crag on the Cragway Trail before coming back down. It was pretty hot (for mountain weather) and the breezes up on the crags were welcome.
At our home we have lots of rhododendron that enjoy full sun. We live at 3,760′ and our rhodo’s bloomed late April/beginning of May. Where we were hiking was around 4,000-4,700′, but since there is a lot of forest coverage, the plants don’t receive full sun. We noticed that the rhododendrons are just now about to bloom there! We took some photos of the buds that are forming…some are already opening up to flower.
If you have an opportunity over the next 2 weeks to hike on Grandfather, I think you will see a lot of rhodo’s blooming. Looks like blueberries won’t be far behind!