Why Do Leaves Change Colors?
Temperatures dropping and leaves changing color can only mean one thing… Fall is finally here!!
The Parklands of Floyds Fork is a great place to view natures changing scenery. As we transition into fall, we are welcomed with the warming array of colors that encompass us. From golden yellow, to crisp red, the Parklands provide many opportunities to see nature in a variety of hues.
Have you ever wondered why leaves change colors? What is the chemistry behind it all?
Let’s take a deeper look at leaves and what thrives under the surface:
Leaves have an abundance of chlorophyll found in chloroplasts, which are vital to photosynthesis. Chlorophyll allows plants to absorb energy from the sun. The wavelengths absorbed are red and blue, which causes the green wavelengths to be reflected; therefore giving leaves their green appearance.
Chlorophyll requires sunlight and warm temperatures to continuously generate new amounts of chlorophyll for the plant. As the nights get longer and sunlight decreases, the amount of chlorophyll also decreases. During this time, plants begin to conserve water and stop nutrient flow to the leaves. As a result, the chlorophyll breaks down and the leaves start to appear less green. The other pigments, that are in leaves year round, begin to emerge with the absence of chlorophyll. The two pigments responsible for the hues of fall foliage are Carotenoids and Flavonoids.
Check out this fun chart to learn more about each pigment and don’t forget to check out our lineup of festive fall programs this October (listed below)!
Fall Programs in The Parklands
Come to The Parklands and enjoy our fall foliage on foot, by bike or paddling down Floyds Fork on a kayak!
October 5, 2014 – Fall Foliage Hike 9 am – 11am
The route will begin at North Beckley paddling access. Our interpretive rangers will guide you along the Louisville Loop, north towards Shelbyville road, where you will view the bottomlands, pride rock, our community garden, and various lakes. Click here to learn more and to register.
October 6-7, 2014 – Autumn is in the Air K- 3 9 am – 4pm
Join us for fall science camps and come explore fall at the Parklands with our interpretive rangers! We will be learning about cooler temperatures, why leaves change colors, plant identification, animals and habitats.
Tuition begins at just $34. Discounted rates available for Parklands Members and early registration. Register before September 30th to save!
Register today! www.theparklands.org/fallcamps
October 11, 2014 – Halloween Costume Walk 2pm – 4pm
The Parklands invites you to come with your pets, family and friends in your best costume! We will be walking around the egg lawn signature loop. This event is sure to be a “treat” for the entire family! Click here to learn more and to register for this FREE event.
To learn more about these events, and others coming up in The Parklands, click here!Story by Olivia Kaiser, Interpretive Ranger for The Parklands