The peak of fall color in Missouri is usually mid‑October. This is when maples, ashes, oaks and hickories are at the height of their fall display. Normally by late October, the colors have faded and the leaves are beginning to drop from the trees.
This progression of color change starts earliest in north Missouri and moves southward across the state to the Bootheel. Generally, the color change is predictable but can vary from year to year. Much depends on the weather.
For the St Louis Region:
We made significant progress in our fall color over the past week. Most of the early‑coloring species have started turning, especially outside of the metropolitan area. Sassafras, mulberry, black gum, flowering dogwood, white ash, persimmon and even a few maples have developed consistent color where the drought conditions weren’t too severe. Virginia creeper, poison ivy and sumacs are joining the trees in their fall color display. Since most of Missouri’s woodlands are dominated by oak and hickory species, which color later in the fall, much of the wooded landscape is still green. With continued warm, sunny days and cool nights, we can expect the oak leaves to change color in several weeks. (Updated Sept. 29, 2011.)