Field of Science

Uncrowning trees

Oh, yes, it's that time of year when having lots of big trees makes for quite a bit of work because of their uncrowning (leaf fall).  Two really large sugar maples and two really large burr oaks are the primary leaf biomass producers, and today's image shows a sculptural bird bath that weighs a couple of tons catching the first of the maple leaves. The hardest part is to keep as many leaves as possible out of the lily pond. And still the drought persists, so some new trees and shrubs must be watered, and the bird bath filled, as the xeric conditions of winter approach. It also means that the fall color season will be brief because leaf fall should be fast given a bit of water stress all around. Good to see that some of the plants that were new last year handling this dry period pretty well meaning that they are now have well established root systems. If anything were still wilting before everything else it would indicate the opposite and be worrisome. Tomorrow will be the start of field work, so research will be competing with garden work, cut it is a nice time of year to be outside. Some graduate students are just now figuring out how much time they'll be spending during this data gathering stage. It'll eat their lunch. TPP will try to be a good guy and help out. 

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