The Three Little Pigments

Our world is coloured by plant pigments – chlorophylls, carotenoids and anthocyanins. The Tale of the Three Little Pigments, the title of my latest book, gives the full story. Details here.

trafficlights

 

Pigment molecules absorb light of different wavelengths so that our eyes see the colours of the spectrum that they reflect or transmit.

chlorophyll b  chlorophyll a  anthocyanin  carotenoid

Chlorophylls, which capture the light energy that powers photosynthesis, are the pigments that make vegetation green, The bright pigments of autumnal leaves, mature fruits and other colourful plant parts generally result from the unmasking or accumulation of cell constituents belonging to two different families of biochemicals – carotenoids and phenolics.