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It's beginning to look a lot like a painting around much of East Tennessee as the leaves begin to reach their peak just in time for the weekend.

Experts at UT say we should begin to see leaves peaking in the Knoxville area through the weekend into early next week.

Ruth Ewald has hiked the hills of East Tennessee for more than 60 years. She said during the fall, there's an added incentive.

"They're beautiful right now," said Ewald of the colorful landscape in Anderson County.

UT Forestry Professor Wayne Clatterbuck says a couple of factors helped to kickstart the change.

"Inside the leaves, there are mass pigments, the yellows, the reds and so forth and as the shorter days come about, the chlorophyll deteriorates and these other colors come through," Clatterbuck said.

He says Dogwoods in the Tennessee Valley have shown great colors so far.

Website: The UT Arboretum

And, you can certainly see that at the UT Arboretum in Oak Ridge.

"A lot to see, a lot of really neat trees," said Kevin Hoyt, director of the Forest Resources Research & Education Center.

The public has access to more 250 acres of colorful sights at the UT Arboretum.

"We do a lot of great stuff here," Hoyt said. "We do research on the ground, natural resources, plant sciences."

He added they also focus on education and outreach. He said during the fall, the UT Arboretum becomes a busy place with fall foliage spectators and visitors looking to learn more about the projects being conducted in the area.

"We are open to the public and we want the public to come here and enjoy this magnificent place," Hoyt said.

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