Here’s a photograph of petal fall nearing completion in an orange grove. If you look closely, you can see recent fallen leaves intermixed with flower petals in this debris under the tree. This indicates that bloom season is coming to an end, honeybee activity is slowing down, and the trees for the most part have completed fruit set.

At this time, fruits are very small, but the tree is moving into a new stage of growth–the production of flush and development of fruit. The debris under the tree is also important for returning organic matter to the soil and helping the breakdown of nutrients which are taken up through roots.

Information about tree health can be gleaned from the leaves on the ground. For example, some leaves are greener than others (indicating that they fell recently), and other leaves are more brown and decayed (indicating leaves that fell some time ago). The condition of the leaves and any symptoms in them can inform growers about the disease and tree health situation in their groves.

• Aperture:ƒ/10• Credit:Steve Rogers• Camera:NIKON D600• Taken:March 19, 2013• Focal length:180mm• ISO:200• Location:27° 58.8467′ 0″ N 81° 51.963′ 0″ W• Shutter speed:1/100s