The Color Change
September 27, 2011, 6:14 PM
We've hit that time of year where we are starting to see more yellow, reds, and oranges on the trees. It's all a part of the process trees do to prepare for the upcoming cooler weather.
The full, green leaves you see in the summer are because the leaves make sugar, or food, for the tree to survive. The colors we see in the autumn come out when there's less daylight and cooler nights. This causes the leaves to make less food as the tree prepares for winter. It's a process we see through autumn's colorful leaf show, which is influenced by leaf pigments, the length of night and of course, weather.
A summer drought can delay the onset of the fall colors, while warm temperatures in the fall will lower the intensity of autumn colors. The best colors come out after a warm, wet spring; a summer with average weather; and warm sunny fall days with cool nights.
So enjoy Mother Nature's colorful show while it's here because when the leaves fall, snow may not be far behind.
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