Mainely Phenology 8/18/18

Producers/Hosts: Hazel Stark and Joe Horn

Leaf Change

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Water is a thing that all plants need, but in excess, such as on the edge of a pond or swamp, that same life-giving water can rob a tree’s roots of essential oxygen. Trees on the edge of parking lots or roads can be under a similar oxygen-starved stress from soil compaction or salination due to heavy dosing of road salt in the winter. So the trees in these places begin to change color first. This change could be a single stressed leaf at the bottom of a crown, or perhaps even a single branch which is plumbed back to a single stressed root by a network of vessels, or sometimes it can be the whole tree showing its fall colors a full two months before the autumnal equinox and even longer still until ‘peak leaf.’