After our discussion we spent time carefully observing and drawing some of Anne’s sample twigs. Sam was very interested in the tiny buds of the Yew. Kian carefully observed the up and down direction of his branch and its tiny leaf buds.
After drawing, we headed to the outdoor classroom. We noticed that there are a few evergreens visible from the outdoor classroom and talked about the weeping willow a few yards over. Anne pointed out that it’s possible to see its buds even from this distance. Observing the silvery, flickering appearance of the leaves of one tree fluttering in the breeze, Will said, “It looks like a ghost.” Looking closely at the tress in the outdoor classroom, Anne identified a Witch Hazel, which blooms in the fall and has tiny buds and flowers still visible. She pointed out that the Magnolia has fuzzy flower buds and smooth leaf buds.
Back in the classroom, we had lots of questions for Anne. Louise asked “How do the trees grow?” Anne explained that the roots carry water and minerals up from the ground, through the branches to the leaves, which are a kind of “food factory” that takes in carbon dioxide and sunlight and converts them into energy to feed the tree. Elle asked, “Why do the leaves change color?” Anne explained that when cold weather comes, of if there is a drought, the trees protect themselves and conserve energy by shutting down the food factory; it closes of the supply and the leaves fall off. She also explained that sap helps the trees carry water and minerals from the ground to the branches and leaves.
Thanks to Anne for sharing her knowledge and love of trees, to Lindsey for making the visit possible, and to Gigi for spending time with us.
by Lisa & Rachael
Pieces of Tucker Room experiences.