Why Are There Conifer Trees in the Mountains?

I know I have said this before, but I will say it again – I love running around in the snow in the Rocky Mountains.  It is just so much fun to jump up and down and land in the soft, fluffy white stuff.

Other than all of the snow blanketing the ground, the snow also blankets the bare branches on trees and drapes over the needles on evergreen trees after a new snow.  The last time I went for a walk in the Rocky Mountains I began to wonder why all the trees higher up on the mountain were the conifer trees and not the broadleaf trees that lose their leaves in winter. Continue reading

How Do Trees Survive Winter?

winter-tree-branches-600x400The cold, freezing, short days of winter in the Rocky Mountains are not the best time of year for most forms of life.  It is not easy to survive and all forms of life have different strategies for how to survive it.  Many animals migrate, hibernate or adapt.

But, what about those forms of life, such as trees, that can not simply leave the area or go underground into a nice, comfy den?  How do they survive the winter? Continue reading