We have another sunny and mild day on tap across western Nevada for Wednesday, as the ridge of high pressure stays put for one more day. A cold front moves through the region late Thursday, kicking up some strong winds (a Wind Advisory is in effect from Thursday afternoon through early Friday morning.) That wind will create a strong rain shadow in the Reno area, keeping most of the precipitation up in the mountains. The high temperature falls from the low 70s Thursday to the upper 50s Friday. Skies will clear out over the weekend and the temperatures will warm to the mid-60s Saturday and then the low 70s on Sunday.
So why do leaves turn colors in the fall? They don’t… they just become their true color in the fall. There are three pigments in leaves: Chlorophylls, Carotenoids, and Anthocyanins. Chlorophyll is necessary for photosynthesis, which produces sugars the tree needs for food. During the spring and summer growing seasons, the bright green of the chlorophyll tends to wipe out the browns, reds and yellows that are produced by the other pigments. But as the tree begins to go dormant in the fall, the production of chlorophyll slows and stops and any left in the leaves breaks down and disappears. At that point, the Carotenoids, and Anthocyanins remain giving the leaves their bright fall colors.