Alpine Flower Monitoring

Access Plant Monitoring Materials  

Forest Flowers

We need you: Hikers, families, school groups, and conservationists!
Help us make observations along the trails on the timing of plant flower and fruit development for inclusion in a long-term study to understand how shifts in climate trends may impact mountain flora.

News in 2014: AMC's Mountain Watch Joins A.T. Seasons!

AMC's Mountain Watch in partnership with the National Park Service, Appalachian Trail Conservancy, and the National Phenology Network are launching A.T. Seasons.  By collecting data from thousands of hikers in the Appalachian Mountains we can further scientific understanding of how global climate change affects the health and vitality of key flora in mountain ecosystems. Learn more about AMC's role in A.T. Seasons under our forest flower watch program.   

Not sure about your ability to identify the right plants?  Start with our simple Flower Check List!  A great way to get to know the plants and their flowers and a fun activity for families on the trail.

Kid friendly activities:
  • Backyard-to-the-Trail booklet: Discover the basics about flowers and fruit! If in live in northern NH, ME, NY or VT use: Northern areas.  If you live in south of those regions use Southern areas.

  • A simple matching game for little ones; print and laminate: Trail Flowers Matching Game
Why should hikers help?
Plants in cold limited ecosystems, such as alpine and other mountain environments, may act as sensitive bioindicators of climate change. Scientists are paying particular attention to alpine and arctic ecosystems around the world. Although alpine areas in the Northeast are rare, they are economically, socially and spiritually a distinct part of the Northeast mountains. AMC scientists will compile these data and produce a web-based database of the observations. As this collection of information grows, it will be analyzed for trends indicating climate change. The information will also be used for public education, to raise media attention, and advocate for appropriate environmental policy to address climate change.  Stay up to date on the latest climate change legislation and how you can make a difference. Learn more>>