Why do Plant Leaves Change Color?

December 11, 2018

Have you ever wondered why plant leaves change color? Plant leaves contain several different types of pigments called Carotenoids, flavonoids, and betalins are additional support pigments— sporting shades of yellow, orange, red, pink, and purple—that also absorb small amounts of light, just like chlorophyll.

Colorful Rex Begonia
PC: Leslie F. Halleck

These pigments are responsible for creating different colors in plant leaves and stems. When the chlorophyll breaks down in fall, as temperatures cool, these pigments become visible. That's why you get a fall color change in your trees. This colorful begonia, that is growing under plant lights, has more of these colorful pigments which are visible all the time.

Gardening Under Lights Book

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