Fall Beckons

There are two types of people: those who need to know why the leaves change to various colours and those who just want to enjoy their beauty.

Regardless of which type you are, the forest is beckoning – and the trees are enjoying their prime colour weeks. These are the warmest days left this year. Go and explore – look up, look down, see with fresh eyes, and enjoy the whole glorious experience of fall in Altona Forest.

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What makes leaves turn colours? Why do they fall? Why are there different colours? Click on the linked sentences below and learn all about it…

Leaf colour comes from the pigments in leaves. The green is chlorophyll – the photosynthesis pigment that helps the tree manufacture it’s food using sunlight. But there are also carotenoids (yellow) and sometimes anthocyanins (red) in leaves.

When the nights are cooler and daylight hours lessen, trees are triggered into a survival process in order to preserve their energy and survive the coming winter. The trees’ energy is stored in it’s trunk and roots. Leaves are expendable – and can be liabilities in winter.  As the chlorophyll is drained from and destroyed in the leaves, the other existing pigments begin to show. Leaves become more translucent and can look like they are lit from inside by the sun.

“At the point where the stem of the leaf is attached to the tree, a special layer of cells develops and gradually severs the tissues that support the leaf. At the same time, the tree seals the cut, so that when the leaf is finally blown off by the wind or falls from its own weight, it leaves behind a leaf scar.” That’s why it’s called ‘fall’

Fall Beckons ~ © 2016 Natasha G

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