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BVNW AP Biology | Fall Colors and Photosynthesis

Fall is a great time of year for learning about the process that gives life to trees and most other plants. As you know, this process is called photosynthesis, which literally means “putting together with light.” As winter nears, less sunlight and less water — elements essential to the process of photosynthesis — will be available to trees. That means less food for deciduous (leaf-shedding) trees! Soon the trees’ photosynthesis “factories” will shut down, the trees will recapture nutrients from their leaves, the leaves will drop to the ground, and the tree will rest until spring when water and light return and awaken the process.

Mme Green's Classroom: Photosynthesis of Fall Leaves

During this lab we wanted to determine if the color of the leaves affects the rate of photosynthesis. We hypothesized that if green leaves have a significantly higher rate of photosynthesis (consumption of CO2) than yellow leaves, because green leaves contain more green chlorophyll a and chlorophyll b photosynthetic pigments than yellow leaves, then the color of the leaves affects the rate of photosynthesis. We used a sealed chamber, in which we placed green and yellow leaves from the same tree, and measured changes in CO2 concentrations using a CO2 probe. We tested three replicates of each color of leaves for five minutes in the light to measure photosynthesis and respiration, and five minutes in the dark to measure respiration alone. By subtracting the light reactions from the dark, we found the rate photosynthesis alone. Our mean value for photosynthesis in the green leaves was -9.71 ppm/g and the mean value for the yellow leaves was -2.25 ppm/g. Our P value was .034. Overall, we failed to reject our hypothesis because our test results showed a significantly higher rate of photosynthesis in the chamber with green leaves than the one with yellow leaves. Although we failed to reject our hypothesis, we encountered a couple of problems while performing this lab, such as: we didn’t allow a substantial amount of time to air out the chamber between each trial and we used nearly half the mass of green leaves to yellow leaves.

Does photosynthesis slow down in the fall? | Yahoo …

So what happens to make the plants change color in the fall, and does it relate to the rate of photosynthesis?What is Photosynthesis?

Another pigment (anthocyanin), which produces reds and purples, isn’t present all year long in most green leaves. It only shows up as the nights get cooler. In fall when trees are breaking down and reabsorbing important nutrients from their leaves, their photosynthetic tissues are especially unstable and vulnerable to too much light and other stresses. Yet trees need the energy from photosynthesis to drive the processes that allow them to recapture as many of those nutrients as possible. Just as this process begins, leaves start producing large amounts of anthocyanins near the leaf surface. Anthocyanin pigments protect the leaves’ dwindling ability to generate energy during this period.

Another pigment (anthocyanin), which produces reds and purples, isn’t present all year long in most green leaves. It only shows up as the nights get cooler. In fall when trees are breaking down and reabsorbing important nutrients from their leaves, their photosynthetic tissues are especially unstable and vulnerable to too much light and other stresses. Yet trees need the energy from photosynthesis to drive the processes that allow them to recapture as many of those nutrients as possible. Just as this process begins, leaves start producing large amounts of anthocyanins near the leaf surface. Anthocyanin pigments protect the leaves’ dwindling ability to generate energy during this period.

Fall Colors - Chlorophyll & Photosynthesis

Temperate deciduous broadleaves, as a whole, avoid having to pay the energy cost of maintenance respiration that would be required if they retained leaves year round. Winter leaf retention would not allow the broadleaved trees, with large masses of leaf tissue, to balance their winter loss of respired carbon (carbon dioxide). Although winter-hardened, dormant leaves of trees in cold temperate climes would have reduced levels of respiration in winter, temperatures are generally too low for an equivalent gain of carbon via photosynthesis. Fall color is associated with the process of leaf senescence leading up to the fall shedding of leaves.

Immediatelyafter exposure to 14CO2, the plant's photosynthetic tissue iskilled by immersing it in boiling alcohol, and all of the biochemical reactions cease.

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  • A chemical called chlorophyll helps the process of photosynthesis ..

    Quizlet provides photosynthesis biol fall activities, flashcards and games. Start learning today for free!

  • Relationship Between Fall Colors Deciduous Trees Photosynthesis

    We did a great lab today all about photosynthesis and leaves changing colours in the fall.

  • Photosynthesis Facts, Information & Worksheets For Kids

    Photosynthesis during fall – …

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Mr. Mohn's Biology Home Turf | Fall Colors and Photosynthesis

This process is called photosynthesis. Temperature, carbon dioxide concentration and light intensity are factors that can limit the rate of photosynthesis.

Photosynthesis in Autumn by Nicole Schiel on Prezi

Quite an interesting article. Thanks for sharing the relationship between the colors of the leaves and photosynthesis. Trees really do “tell” the story of photosynthesis using beautiful colors. Are we “listening”?

10/10/2014 · Photosynthesis in Autumn ..

As was previously discuss, chlorophyll is extremely important in plant’s leaf cells to produce sugars via a process called photosynthesis. This type of pigment is found during most of the plant’s growing season, which is during the spring and summer months. Most plants also contain a pigment called carotenoid, as discussed, which creates a yellow/orange color. This pigment, as well, is found during most of the growing season, but chlorophyll washes out its color, which explains why Sugar Maple leaves are green during the spring and summer months. Unlike most trees, Sugar Maples also contain a pigment called anthocyanin which gives plant leaves a red color. This pigment, unlike the other two, is only expressed in the autumn months and under conditions where the days become shorter, the nights longer, and the temperature drops slowly. As this happens, there is less and less sunlight, causing the tree to produce less chlorophyll until chlorophyll production ceases. As less chlorophyll is made, the other pigments within the leaves can begin to be expressed. The rate at which this happens varies from leaf to leaf in Sugar Maple, so the leaves of one single tree can give a whole assortment of colors at any given time.

Photosynthesis requires the absorption of sunlight to ..

Fall is a great time of year for learning about the process that gives life to trees and most other plants. As you know, this process is called photosynthesis, which literally means “putting together with light.” As winter nears, less sunlight and less water — elements essential to the process of photosynthesis — will be available to trees. That means less food for deciduous (leaf-shedding) trees! Soon the trees’ photosynthesis “factories” will shut down, the trees will recapture nutrients from their leaves, the leaves will drop to the ground, and the tree will rest until spring when water and light return and awaken the process.

Frank Turner - Photosynthesis - YouTube

The bright reds and purples we see in leaves are made mostly in the fall. In some trees, like maples, glucose is trapped in the leaves after photosynthesis stops. Sunlight and the cool nights of autumn turn this glucose into a red color. The brown color of trees like oaks is made from wastes left in the leaves.

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