What is the purpose of sheets

See trees with their leaves

Between the whole animals, myriads of bacteria help to make nutritious humus out of leaves. And the mushrooms: Mushroom threads that are mostly invisible to the human eye run through the forest floor. There is a lot of lignin in the leaves of beech and oak, this is the substance with which wood becomes wood. Lignin can only be crushed and slowly broken down by certain fungi. This is why the leaves of beeches and oaks lie on the forest floor for a particularly long time.

Trees protect themselves with homemade antifreeze when they are hibernating

In Germany, deciduous trees shed their leaves in autumn. Only the oaks keep the brown leaves like a warming winter coat and only shed the young leaves in spring. Only the larch gets rid of its needles from the conifers. All other conifers keep their evergreen needles, which is why the fir tree can be green in the living room even in winter when it snows.

However, firs, pines, spruces and other conifers also protect themselves from the cold and drought in winter. Your needles are protected from frost with a layer of wax. In addition, the trees produce a kind of antifreeze from sugar and protein compounds that lowers the freezing point in the cell sap of deciduous trees. So they survive the dormancy, the hibernation of the trees. Peace is vital for the trees. If they are disturbed, they die quickly.

The next generation of trees such as acorns, beechnuts or the seeds in the cones of conifers also rest in winter. If they germinated in autumn, the risk of freezing to death or being eaten would be too great. They slumber warmly wrapped in cones or in the ground, buried by jays and squirrels as winter supplies. If they are not eaten, the tree seeds will germinate in spring. They notice when it is warm enough, then, protected by sprouting herbs, push themselves to the light. And thanks to the light receptors, the small beeches and oaks can see where they are heading with the first leaves.

Swell: Fay-Wee, Li et.al., Phytochrome diversity in green plants and the origin of canonical plant phytochromes, Nature Communications volume 6, Article number: 7852 (2015)

Mancuso, Stefano; Viola Alessandra, The Intelligence of Plants, Kunstmann Verlag, Munich, 2015.