Fall Leaves: season brings changing colors

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(KTVI) - The leaves had a wonderful frolic.  They danced to the wind's loud song.  They whirled, and they floated, and scampered.  They circled and flew along.

There's nothing better than sharing autumn poetry with Urban Forester Mark Grueber amidst a colorful canopy.

Grueber talked about why some leaves change earlier than others, and it mostly depends on the tree species.

Each species colors at a different time so if one species is predominate in your area, and that tree normally colors up early, your 'peak' will be early.

In another area with different trees, it may be later.  It's all very species and weather dependent.

So what exactly causes the change in colors?

According to Grueber it comes down to a few key changes that occur in the fall season.

One reason behind the color change is shortening days and cool nights.  This means less food production in leaves.

Sugars are trapped in the leaves during cool nights and chemical changes cause the different colors.

Missouri Department of Conservation's website maintains a fall color update and has more information, including a fall color map of Missouri.

There is also a new Missouri Fall Color app for Apple and Android smartphones and devices available for download.

Visit the Missouri Department of Conservation's website

Information on Mark Grueber