Every autumn the leaves of the trees turnyellow color and fall to the ground. Children are given homework to collect them for making a herbarium, girls take autumn photographs - in general, yellowed leaves do not lie idle. Since they fill almost the entire space with themselves, the owners of private territories try to collect them in bags and throw them away. However, scientists believe that it is better not to do this, because throwing autumn leaves into a landfill causes great harm to nature. And leaving them to lie on the ground, you can, on the contrary, help the environment. In this article, we invite you to find out why trees shed their leaves, why they turn yellow in autumn, and why it is better for them to stay on the ground.
- Why do tree leaves turn yellow in autumn?
- Why do trees shed their leaves in autumn
- 3 Why you can not remove autumn leaves
- 3.1 Autumn leaves are good fertilizer
- 3.2 Autumn leaves help animals
- 3.3 Autumn leaves do not belong in a landfill
Why do tree leaves turn yellow in autumn?
Leaves are green in spring and autumnthis feature is given to them by the pigment chlorophyll. The green dye is produced during photosynthesis, when leaves take in carbon and release oxygen. This process proceeds well only in the presence of sunlight and heat, that is, in summer. And in autumn the weather becomes cloudy and cold, so the green chlorophyll is replaced by other pigments that color the leaves yellow and red.
The pigment is responsible for the yellow color of the leaves.xanthophyll, leaves become orange due to carotene, and red due to anthocyanin. To produce carotene, you need heat and sun, so the leaves turn orange first, in the first days of autumn. Over time, it becomes darker and colder, which leads to the production of xanthophyll and anthocyanin - the leaves turn yellow and red.
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Why do trees shed their leaves in autumn?
The main reason for autumn leaf fallis soil freezing. Trees no longer receive enough water and nutrients, so they begin to save energy by slowing down metabolic processes and getting rid of leaves. A thick layer forms at the base of the leaves, which prevents the transfer of nutrients. Over time, this layer becomes so dry that the leaves can no longer stay on the branches and fall to the ground. Once at the bottom, they begin to perform other important functions.
Why you can not remove autumn leaves
When autumn comes, many people wonder if it is necessary to remove fallen leaves? The authors of the scientific publication IFL Science have made several strong arguments that it is better not to do this.
Autumn leaves are good fertilizer
First of all, it is believed that fallen leavesare a storehouse of nutrients for the soil. When they decompose, the earth is saturated with compounds important for fertility, such as nitrogen, carbon, phosphorus and potassium. As a result of saturation with natural fertilizers, grass and other plants on these soils will grow better than usual. But it is worth noting that it is better to remove some of the leaves so that the earth has access to sunlight and air. Ideally, if the leaves can be somehow crushed to speed up decomposition - a lawn mower or trimmer may be suitable for this.
Autumn leaves help animals
Without removing autumn leaves, you can help animals.A moist and nutritious environment is very comfortable for spiders, worms and other living creatures. They can destroy pests, soften the soil and perform many other useful functions. They are also food for larger animals like birds. In addition to all this, the layer of leaves is able to prevent the growth of weeds - so, at least, the authors of the publication mentioned above say.
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Autumn leaves don't belong in a landfill
By not throwing away the leaves, people can alsosignificantly reduce the amount of waste. According to statistics, every year people take up to 8 million tons of leaves to landfills - at least in the US, yard waste makes up 13% of all solid waste. In addition, in most cases, people throw away the leaves in plastic bags, which do not decompose for a very long time and poison the environment.
From all this, it can be concluded thatit is best to simply collect the leaves around the trees. There is no doubt about the correctness of this approach - no one is engaged in throwing out fallen leaves in the forest, so everything grows so well there.
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In autumn you could observe a very strange phenomenon,when the temperature is below +10 degrees Celsius it feels extremely cold, while in spring in such weather you can walk in light clothes. We talked about the reason for the different perception of heat in spring and autumn in this material.