Growth Habits of Deciduous Tree's ExplainedThe term deciduous means "tending to fall off" or "temporary." The word deciduous is used in reference to trees or shrubs that lose their leaves during the winter season. There are several types of trees that belong to the deciduous family. Deciduous trees include the species of oak, maple, aspen, birch and elm.
The deciduous family also contains a number of coniferous genera. In this category the larch and metasquoia are the most common. It is important to note that all of the oak species are not part of the deciduous family. A deciduous tree is known for periods of beautiful color and then periods of barrenness. The period in which a deciduous tree sheds its leaves coincides with winter months or a dry season.
In the field of botany the term deciduous refers to trees, shrubs and plants. The types of trees, shrubs and plants that fall under the term deciduous are those that shed their leaves for part of the year. The process of shedding leaves is known as abscission.
If the deciduous tree is located in a colder climate then the tree will typically lose its leaves during the colder months of the year. While deciduous trees that are located ion warmer climates tend to lose their leaves during the dry season. There are several plants and trees, such as the evergreen, that are considered to be semi-deciduous.
Most of the deciduous plants will flower during the time when they are leafless. When the deciduous plant flowers this increases the effectiveness of reproduction and pollination. The absence of the leaves on the deciduous tree is perfect for the improved wind transmission of the pollen . This is most effective with the transmission of pollen from wind-pollinated plants.
The absence of the leaves also increases the visibility of the flowers to different types of insects that are required for insect pollination in several types of deciduous plants. The flowers of the deciduous plant can become damaged by frost during the cold winter months or in dryer areas the flowers become damaged from water stress.
By losing the leaves during the winter months a deciduous plant can reduce waster loss since most of the water that the plant or tree will come into contact with is ice. There is less trunk and branch damage from ice storms when the deciduous trees are leafless. The loss of leaves to a deciduous tree is not only a necessity in terms of reproduction but also in terms of protection.
A deciduous tree is usually located in a forest with other plant species. The deciduous tree provides shade to plants that require full or partial shade. When a deciduous tree re-grows its leaves the leaves actually form a canopy surrounding the tree and the forest area. Many people become breathless at the sight of a deciduous forest in full bloom or when the deciduous tree is changing color in preparation for winter. A deciduous tree is beautiful to look at during the spring, summer and fall months.