FALL COLORS ARE COMING!
WHY DO LEAVES CHANGE?
When the kids are heading off to school and pumpkin spice is starting to show up in everything, you know autumn is upon us. As the days get shorter, trees start their process of hibernation to survive the cold winter. With less light from shorter days and color temperatures, the leaves stop producing chlorophyll--the chemical responsible for the green color and photosynthesis--how the plant creates food (glucose) from sunlight. The yellow xanthophylls, the orange carotenoids, and the red and purple anthocyanins pigments will start to show the "true" color of the trees.
The leaves eventually fall because the tree protects its vulnerable extremities by cutting off nutrient flow to the leaves and sealing off the end of the leaf stem. The grip of the dying leaves eventually weakens and gives way. Mother nature then recycles the carpet of decomposing leaves on the ground by returning moisture and nutrients to the soil.