GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — Fall is such a beautiful season full of warm, cozy and colorful vibes.
Many changes happen during fall, such as a change in the color of leaves. The timing of color changes and the onset of falling leaves is primarily regulated by the calendar as nights become longer. As night length increases in Autumn, chlorophyll production slows down and then stop. Eventually, all the chlorophyll is destroyed.
The carotenoids (also found in pumpkins) and anthocyanins that are present in the leaf are then unmasked and show their colors. The timing of the color change varies by species. This is why you see a lot of different colors such as red, orange, yellow, and even brown.
The fall foliage only lasts for so long before the leaves fall off the tree. Needles and leaves that fall are not wasted. They decompose and restick the soil with nutrients and make up part of the spongy humus layer of the forest floor that absorbs and holds rainfall.
Fallen leaves also become food for numerous soil organisms vital to the forest’s ecosystem. The best part of fall is visiting places like New England to experience all the fall aesthetics.