It's one of those mysteries why some years trees, like oak trees, produce massive amounts of acorns and other years, not so much. Usually, it happens to all the oak trees in a region in the same year. If you do online searches, you'll find that 2021 was considered a mast year. But my scarlet oak, Quercus coccinea, is having a mast year this year. I've never seen so many acorns fall from one tree. The other day, I spent about 15 minutes raking some up because there were just so many … [Read more...] about Truly, A Mast Year
It's another mast year for the scarlet oak in the front garden. (Whenever I write "front garden" I feel pretty fancy!) And mast year? That just means it's a year when it has decided to produce a lot of acorns, more than in a non-mast or normal year. This scarlet oak, Quercus coccinea, is a pretty fast grower, in my opinion, when it comes to oak trees. This one was planted in 2011 and is already quite tall. I've had it professionally pruned once and will have someone do some more … [Read more...] about The Squirrels Are Back
How in the world did my tree hide all that pretty red and orange color all summer long? When learned long ago that all the colors of fall were there all along in the leaves of summer, but they were masked by the green of chlorophyll. We couldn't see them because the tree was working diligently, steadily on its job of photosynthesis, which requires that green pigment, chlorophyll. Then as the days grew shorter and cooler, the tree slowed down its work of photosynthesis, slowed down its … [Read more...] about My Tree Was Hiding These Beautiful Colors!
They are declaring 2019 is a mast year for trees. A mast year is when all kinds of trees collectively produce more than their normal amount of seed. Really, look it up. Just do an online search for "mast year 2019" and behold all the articles and posts about this phenomenon. You can also read that scientists and others don't really understand how it is that all the trees seem to coordinate their efforts, so to speak, to abundantly flower and produce massive amounts of seed in the same … [Read more...] about 2019: A Mast Year for Trees
The other day, my sister, who lives with her family in the house we all grew up in, sent out a text to let us know a crew was cutting down the maple tree in the front yard the next morning. Without hesitation, I changed all my plans for the day so I could be present for the last moments of this once grand and glorious tree that we grew up with. My Dad planted this tree, and many others, when we first moved there when I was a toddler. I assume I was there for the planting, perhaps … [Read more...] about Eulogy for a Tree
I took my tree to Tree Court. I'm breaking up with it. Me: Your Honor, this tree has not performed its tree duties in the almost seven years it has been taking up residence in my garden. It refuses to have flaking bark like other paperbark maple trees and has barely grown since it was planted. At one point, Your Honor, my sister thought it was a weed tree that I just let grow there. The Judge: Does the tree have anything to say in its defense? Silence. Crickets chirping. The … [Read more...] about I took my tree to Tree Court