The wind blows the leaves past, getting caught in the edges, disappearing down the street. But have you ever wondered where do they go?
In autumn, some trees cannot keep their leaves due to the cold, frosty ground and less sunlight we see in the day. A tree will drop (shed) its leaves so it doesn’t have to make as much energy, making the survival of the winter easier. It is like a long sleep, where the tree can rest through the harsh winter. The leaves over the summer have been through a tough time. Some will have been eaten by insects or damaged by the wind, so dropping them in autumn is good as it can grow fresh new leaves in spring.
Another benefit is without leaves, strong winds can move between the branches easily so the tree is less likely to be blown down!
Do you know someone who rakes leaves up from their garden every year? Have you noticed the sound of leaves when you walk through them in Autumn? Can you make that sound now?
Where do the leaves go once a tree has dropped them?
When the leaves have settled on to the ground. The bacteria and mould (micro-organisms), fungi and insects like worms all help the leaves break down (decompose) into the soil. This is great for the plants and trees as it gives essential nutrients for them to grow back stronger the next year.
The next time you kick the leaves while walking, remember that they are full of goodness!