Thursday, November 1, 2012

Ever-green ? Yes and No

Now that our annual "Leaf Drop"  (Leaf Drop ) is over, evergreen trees appear more prominent in the landscape. Soon, people will be looking for their Christmas trees; perhaps cutting their own at a Christmas Tree plantation. 
Breaking News:  "Father Nature" Kills Colorado Blue Spruce !
There, they will learn the names of various conifers: pines, spruces, and firs.
Conifer simply means cone-bearing.
And evergreen simply means ever-green, right? Well, yes and no.
Evergreen trees do remain green all year, BUT... they also lose a portion of their leaves (needles) each fall.
Maybe you knew this. Maybe you didn't. If you have a little time, please come along for a short walk with Father Nature, to see two evergreen examples.
 This is the White Cedar. Its flattish, scale-like needles will last two to five years on the twigs.

These are the opened female cones; their seeds already dispersed.

This is a view of White Cedar in its favorite habitat; overhanging a freshwater stream. (Bear Creek)

These sprigs of spent, dead needles are collecting below the White Cedar tree.

Here is the White Pine, with its fine, flexible needles; some turning yellow in mid-October.

Here you see the yellowing needles that were emerging in the spring of 2011, now nearly ready to fall in October, 2012. The remaining green needles were started in the spring of 2012, and you can see them yellowing in October, 2013.

This young, 15-foot (5 meter) White Pine is a good example of the new vs. old needles.

This older White Pine, about 40 feet (12 meters) tall, displays its typical growth pattern of lateral branching.  The needles have already dropped before the Sugar Maple leaves behind it.

The yellow needles turned tannish-brown and dropped to the ground in late October.

This silhouette of a mature White Pine on the horizon, means the day is done, gone the sun.

You may return home now. There is no homework assignment ...

But I would appreciate your continued support of WWFN.

"Father Nature" thanks you for coming along. Drop me a line sometime.

Will you enjoy the evergreens this winter?     Yes ___                             (or no_)

Photo Locations

Townsend Park,  (Townsend) Cannonsburg,  Michigan

 7-Mile Road,  Kent County,  Michigan (Michigan)