Leaves are important to plants and trees because they convert sunlight energy into food through a process called photosynthesis. Leaves have a chemical called chlorophyll in them, which is what allows them to photosynthesize.Know More
Leaves go through seasonal changes, which include:
Leaves change color in the fall because as temperatures cool, the chlorophyll in the leaves starts to break down, which signals to the tree that it needs to store the converted food in the tree, rather than in the leaves. The leaves change color because of the lack of chlorophyll, which is what makes the leaves green in the spring and summer months. The changing color depends on the presence of carotenoids or anthocyanins. Carotenoids are the chemicals that turn leaves brown, orange and yellow, whereas anthocyanins are the chemicals that cause leaves to turn purple or red.
Deciduous trees lose their leaves in autumn because as temperatures fall, the trees create a seal between the branch and its leaves that protects the branches from the freezing temperatures of winter. Evergreen trees, on the other hand, have needles instead of leaves, which are able to withstand the freezing temperatures because of their waxy coating. Needles remain green all year and do not change color or fall off.
One difference between a Japanese maple tree and an evergreen is that the maple is a deciduous tree and loses its leaves in winter while the evergreen is coniferous. The Japanese maple has feathery red-purple leaves that turn bright red in the fall before dropping off the tree. Evergreens retain their leaves and color all year, according to Colorado State University Extension.Full Answer >
Start pruning the maple tree when the leaves are fully grown. Most trees are pruned in early spring, but pruning maple trees a little later keeps their sticky sap from being a messy problem. First, remove any dead and damaged branches, which are characterized by drooping and weak limbs.Full Answer >
Spirea are deciduous shrubs, which means they lose their leaves in the fall. They thrive in hardiness zones 3 to 8 and are easy to grow for a beginning gardener. They prefer well-drained soil and full sun though they can tolerate some shade.Full Answer >
Juniper shrubs are a drought-resistant shrub with leaves that can be either needle or scale-like. Juniper shrubs are in the genus Juniperus in the cypress family.Full Answer >