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October 25, 2017
Fall Foliage Primer - October 25, 2017

FFP HeaderWeek 5 of the Fall Foliage Primer is seeing more color in all locations. Yep, hard to believe! Asheville, Waynesville, and Hendersonville are stretching to reach peak color in the near term.  The Boone and Valle Crucis areas have some substantial leaf loss, but reds, oranges, and yellows are still popping up and are pretty prominent (particularly in the lower elevations). Greenville and Knoxville are still waiting for lots of color, but it is appearing slowly. All areas have lots of fun events in store including ghost walks, pumpkin carving, and beautiful hikes.

October 18, 2017
Putting Your Garden to Bed

Iris_Gift_Nature.jpgA good cleanup in the fall is well worth your while for a healthy, vital garden next spring. Get started by pulling up vegetable plants such as tomatoes, squashes, peas, and beans. Compost the disease-free ones; put sickly or blighted ones on the burn pile or discard away from the garden. Pull up and put away garden stakes and tomato cages.  Don’t forget to clean up dead or declining annuals... and remember marigolds, calendulas and zinnias are easy to grow next year, from the seeds you save.

October 18, 2017
Fall Foliage Primer - October 18, 2017

FFP-Header-Week4Week four is filled with special events, festivals, and fall color. Asheville, Waynesville, and Hendersonville are stretching toward their peak color, while Knoxville and Greenville are still a ways off.  In Valle Crucis and Boone, the color is here and there, with some spots being past peak and others still waiting to begin their final act. Overall, the weather for being outside and enjoying whatever is around the bend is going to be just about perfect everywhere!

October 11, 2017
24 Hours in Valle Crucis, NC

VCBlogLocal historian John Preston Arthur wrote, “There’s a dreamy spell that hangs over this little valley.” That spell is further magnified during the month of October. With eye-popping visuals – think brightly-colored leaves, cattle quietly grazing in pastures, orange pumpkins peering out from amongst their leafy vines – the curvy road that brings you from Boone or Banner Elk is like a portal that slows time to a more relaxing, almost lazy, pace. To take in all of the activities we’re recommending for this 24 hours, you won’t be able to tarry long.

October 11, 2017
Fall Foliage Primer - October 11, 2017

HeaderWeek3Week three of the primer is seeing a lot more color appearing in the higher and middle elevations. In some reporting locations, the color change really sped up over the weekend. This week is filled with festivals and special events to truly get out and take part in the color change.

October 4, 2017
Fall Foliage Primer - October 4, 2017

HeaderCollageWeek two of the Fall Foliage Primer is here, but a lot more color is not. Higher elevations around Graveyard Fields or Grandfather Mountain have more color, but in general we are seeing some reds and yellows hanging around with the getting-ready-to-get-started greens. While the leaves an event in themselves, there are many more happenings in our communities that our reporters hope to help you discover.

October 4, 2017
Made in NC

OurStateMadeinNC5.jpgWhen Our State magazine started looking for a partner for its 2017 Made in NC contest, Mast General Store seemed like a natural fit. “They believe in many of the same things we do,” said Lisa Cooper, president of Mast General Store.

September 27, 2017
Fall Foliage Primer - September 27, 2017

FFPHeader-Week1-20170927.jpgIt's the first report of the fall foliage season. As is to be expected, the most prevalent color is green, but in all reporting areas there is some fall color beginning to show itself. It might be in the blooming of goldenrod and asters or it might be in the sourwoods and dogwoods beginning to show their true colors. Read the full report to get ideas on activites to enjoy during your visit.

September 20, 2017
Let's Ask Francine

Cornbread.jpgIf you subscribe to Mast Store’s Almost Monthly E-mail, you are well acquainted with Francine. She’s corresponded with folks for more than 16 years – almost since the invention of e-mail. Her fans have shared many accomplishments, concerns, and questions over the years. In this week’s blog, Francine answers some questions from her website “Ask Francine” opportunity. Let’s see what she has to say.

September 13, 2017
Please Take Your Seats – The Show is About to Begin

PriceLakeLeaves3.jpg

Perhaps a better directive would be “please begin planning your itineraries and booking your reservations; the show is about to begin.” As the calendar continues its march to the fall equinox, the anticipation of the changing of the leaves builds.

Will this be a good fall color season? How will the recent hurricane affect the leaves? Just what happens to make the leaves change anyway? The answers to these questions will vary depending upon who you ask, where you live, and the types of trees in the general area. To get a better handle on an answer that is applicable for the Blue Ridge and Smoky Mountains, we contacted Dr. Howard Neufeld at Appalachian State University.


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