A unit of Greenways Nursery, New Delhi

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Trees and plants can sense seasonal changes and adapt accordingly. The shrubs, deciduous and evergreen trees, as well as the plants in your garden— all adapt to seasonal changes.

In November, you will see azaleas lose their leaves. They turn yellowish or reddish and fall. But how do plants adjust themselves to seasons as well as days and nights throughout the year? Well, here we will make you understand the process involved.

How are seasonal changes sensed by plants?

Although it may sound simplistic, plants of all kinds are programmed to react to weather, temperature, rainfall, soil conditions, and day length. This internal programming, for example, allows trees in some places to retain their leaves and those in some other places to lose them.

As the Earth revolves around the sun, the length of days and nights changes. As you may know, the seasons change between the Northern and Southern Hemispheres. Plants know when they should bloom based upon the length of the nights. Some plants also sense winter’s arrival as nights begin to get longer than before. And as mentioned above, this is how trees in some places lose their leaves, and others keep them during the same time just because the seasons in those places are different.

The amazing seasonal changes in plants can be triggered by a variety of phytochromes, which allow them to measure light over 24-hour periods. These phytochromes activate a variety of hormones in plants that cause them to bloom, form bulbs, and drop their leaves.

Temperature also plays an important role in this sensing mechanism in some plants. As spring approaches, peach trees or azaleas monitor how cold the air is and how long it lingers. These plants develop an internal mechanism after a certain number of hours sensing the temperature, which signals them to grow and bloom.

As a matter of fact, both gardeners and plants are affected by seasons

Seasonal transitions are important to consider when planning for seasonal growth. This will help you have a beautiful garden all year around.

Smart growers consider plants in season right now and plan for those they will be planting later. It is important to consider factors like the pH of the soil, its moisture, and how much sunlight it receives. You can use soil testers to determine these factors. It’s only after testing these that you should plan which plants to grow.

You should also consider the following factors when deciding on which plants to grow in which season—

  • The picturesque fall season: As summer turns to winter, it is a season of transition. This is the time to plant shrubs and trees that are about to go dormant. These generally bloom in the early part of spring. Make sure to plant your seeds when the soil is still workable and not too dry. You might consider planting spicebush and highbush blueberry or “Winterthur”viburnum. These plants produce stunning colours in the spring season.
  • The chilly winters: You won’t plant much during this time. Most areas have soil that is either too dry or too cold. This makes it extremely difficult for your plants to obtain the nutrients they need. Winter is not the time to plant, but it’s the season when you should be spending more time caring for and protecting your plants. Winter annuals, ornamental cabbages, winter jasmine and dogwood, are someplants you might want to plant during winter.
  • The breathtakingly beautiful spring season: Even those who don’t know much about gardening know that spring is a time when plants bloom all over the world. The bulbs that you have planted in autumn or early winter will start to bloom in your garden during spring. This is the time growers smile with joy. This is also the best time to start planting seeds for perennials like peonies. They are stunning to see as they explode into colour as summer approaches.
  • The summertime: Many gardeners wait until summer. The soil conditions are ideal for annual flowering plants. These plants will flower until the fall, so you can enjoy an endless array of colours even as the seasons change. You might think about planting “Josee” lilacs, “Purple d’Oro,” and “Harvest of Memories.”

To Conclude

Every plant is different and responds to seasonal changes differently. Think about the poinsettias in your garden; they only bloom in winter. And the trees in your backyard almost go bare during fall. And then what happens when spring arrives? The same plants and trees begin to grow new leaves and flowers. Well, the way plants change in response to changing seasons is not just fascinating but also indicative of their life cycle. Growers can learn from such patterns of changeand can plan their gardens accordingly. Your garden will always look like a beautiful kaleidoscope of colours, textures, and foliage if you keep upgrading it with new plants keeping the seasons in mind.