I got an interesting E-mail from Stefan yesterday. It was about my recent blog post with photo and text about the leaves dropping from the trees in my garden. He was not too happy about me using the word ‘sleeping’.
This is what he said: ” Btw. the leaves are not “sleeping”, as you stated euphemistically, they are actually dying and rotting (being digested by microbes), but that’s the circle of life (giving back their nutrients to the environment).
In Göttingen I worked beside other things on aging of leaves. The beautiful bright Indian Spring colours derive from carotinoids and xantophylles the plant produces to protect itself from drought or other abiotic stress. I now do the same with algae: I reduce their nitrogen source and turn up light exposure in order to make them produce lipids (fat=biofuel) and they turn from spring-bright green to autumn shades of olive & sad yellow.”
Now we know! He is a highly qualified biologist/botanist/ and knows his stuff, so my leaves are not sleeping….they are moving into a natural ‘not-alive’ stage!
He recently moved to a new town, flat, job and laboratory. Here is a photo of him at work and his breakfast. He calls it his ‘Traditional English Breakfast’. In the canteen he gets strange looks from vegetarian colleagues.
He also commented on my pork pie post. He included a list of other dishes he likes based on meat and pastry. Here it is: pelmeni, tortellini, ravioli, piroshki, pirukad (estonian!), empanadas, kudu, oystrich, Maultaschen, dumplings, wan tan, spring rolls, pot stickers.
He is a much travelled man and enjoys discovering new foods and tastes. Stefan, on behalf of my readers I would like to thank you very much for your contribution.