Sunday January 31st 2021 – Some trees have a property, and it’s mostly, but not exclusively oak trees – that they do not drop their leaves when they die off in autumn.
Instead, the tree keeps the dead leaf attached, shedding it the following spring.
The behaviour is called ‘Marcescence’ and scientists don’t really know why it occurs. It may be to protect leaf buds from browsing animals like deer, or to faster recover nutrients from the dead leaves by absorbing them back into the tree directly, rather than through the soil.
Whatever the reason, it’s very curious.