Before the Leaves Fall

— Written By
en Español

El inglés es el idioma de control de esta página. En la medida en que haya algún conflicto entre la traducción al inglés y la traducción, el inglés prevalece.

Al hacer clic en el enlace de traducción se activa un servicio de traducción gratuito para convertir la página al español. Al igual que con cualquier traducción por Internet, la conversión no es sensible al contexto y puede que no traduzca el texto en su significado original. NC State Extension no garantiza la exactitud del texto traducido. Por favor, tenga en cuenta que algunas aplicaciones y/o servicios pueden no funcionar como se espera cuando se traducen.

English is the controlling language of this page. To the extent there is any conflict between the English text and the translation, English controls.

Clicking on the translation link activates a free translation service to convert the page to Spanish. As with any Internet translation, the conversion is not context-sensitive and may not translate the text to its original meaning. NC State Extension does not guarantee the accuracy of the translated text. Please note that some applications and/or services may not function as expected when translated.

Collapse ▲


As the weather starts to cool off and it feels more like fall, one thing you will begin to notice is the leaves. Deciduous trees are plants that lose their leaves annually that can produce vibrant colors before they fall. 

Two of the most significant factors affecting leaf color change are day length and environmental temperature. The importance is not that the amount of sunlight has decreased, but rather the amount of dark has increased. Also, environmental temperatures determine the leaf color, With adequate amounts of soil moisture, warm days with bright sunlight, and cool nights produce the change in foliar color. A prolonged drought, disease, or insect pests can cause a tree to shed foliage to conserve moisture, food, or energy. When leaves stop making food, photosynthesis stops, causing the green leaf color to fade. This makes it possible for you to see yellow and orange colors. These colors were in the leaf all along but were hidden by the green of the chlorophyll. In a simplified version when leaves become unproductive the leaf color begins to change, therefore prompting trees to shed these leaves.

We don’t have to think about this process to enjoy the color of fall, but sometimes it is nice to know.

Leaf colors