Autumn leaves bring beautiful color to area
The heat and dry conditions of this past summer remains memorable in the minds of Fox Valley gardeners. Little did we know, as we sweltered in the summer heat, the delights that would unfold as fall emerged! We have seen beautiful colors as our landscape prepares for the oncoming winter.
In the spring and summer trees and plants absorb water through their roots. Carbon dioxide is absorbed from the air. Plants turn water and carbon dioxide into oxygen and sugar (glucose); we call this photosynthesis, which means ‘putting together with light’. Chlorophyll helps make photosynthesis happen and it gives plants their green color.
Shorter days with less sunshine signal the trees to begin getting ready for winter. As the trees go through this process, the chlorophyll disappears and the bright green color fades away. Yellow and orange colors emerge. Red and purple colors, like maple leaves, result from glucose being held in the leaves post photosynthesis. Brown colors, like oaks, are the result of wastes that remain in the leaves. The assortment of beautiful fall colors is a gift of nature.
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