Why are tree leaves green in color?

Leaves contain chlorophyll in them that is green in color, and really important for photosynthesis of leaves.

Leaf color comes from pigments. These pigments are natural substances produced by the leaf cell, and impart their color to the leaves. There are three types of pigments:

  • Chlorophyll – green color
  • Carotenoid – yellow, orange and brown color
  • Anthocyanin – red color

From the above, chlorophyll is the most important of the three, as it is vital for photosynthesis.

Usually, trees are very lush and green during summer. It is because they are working hard and are busy carrying out a chemical process known as photosynthesis. Trees, in fact, leaves are nature’s food bearers. They absorb water from the ground through their roots, take in the carbon dioxide from the air, and combine them together to form oxygen and glucose. Though, this entire process is done using sunlight. And, this entire process is termed as photosynthesis.

Photosynthesis means ‘putting together with light’, and is really important process of nature, as it produces oxygen and glucose. Oxygen is an important source of energy, without which, the entire human race would be extinct. And, Glucose is a kind of sugar, which is used by plants as food for energy and as a building blocks for growth.

Now, the reason that plants look green in color is because they are trying to obtain energy from the sun using a particular part of the light spectrum, mainly the red and infra red wavelengths. If one can remember from their physics classes that the color absorbed from a source is the same color that is reflected back from the object. So, in the case of green plants, the green wavelength is reflected, and all the other colors, especially reds and blues, are absorbed to start the energy cycle in the plants.

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