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Summer is not even over yet but the fall colours are impatient and the Prickly Wild Roses are already turning red. The process of leaves changing color in the fall is surprisingly complex. Perhaps the most common explanation for color change in leaves is the withdrawal of chlorophyll. This appears, however, to only be true for leaves that turn yellow. The yellow seen in some autumn leaves result from the loss of chlorophyl unmasking the yellow carotenoids that were there all along. Red leaves, on the other hand, come from stopping the production of chlorophyll and starting the production of anthocyanin, which also gives raspberries their red colour. The Prickly Wild Roses along the trails have rapidly turned red over the last week while most other plants still are green.
May the curiosity be with you. This is from “The Birds are Calling” blog (www.thebirdsarecalling.com). Copyright Mario Pineda.