My over-the-road-oak May

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As you can can see, in the last month my oak has produced its full leaf canopy – and what a canopy!

I felt rather guilty after last month’s post when I castigated my oak for not doing much, as almost immediately it showed signs of leaf (11th April below).

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It’s interesting noticing how initially the overall appearance is quite brown, but as more and more leaves appear, the green takes over (see 26th April on the left, 6th May on the right).

Another thing I’ve noticed for the first time is an oak apple.  Now to be honest this isn’t on ‘my’ oak, it’s on one a little further down the road, but take a look, it’s so incongruous.

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According to Wikipedia

Oak apple or oak gall is the common name for a large, round, vaguely apple-like gall commonly found on many species of oak. Oak apples range in size from 2–5 cm in diameter and are caused by chemicals injected by the larva of certain kinds of gall wasp in the family Cynipidae.[1] The adult female wasp lays single eggs in developing leaf buds. The wasp larvae feed on the gall tissue resulting from their secretions. Considerable confusion exists in the general ‘literature’ between the oak apple and the oak marble gall. The oak marble is frequently called the oak apple due to the superficial resemblance and the preponderance of the oak marble gall in the wild. Other galls found on oak trees include the Oak artichoke gall and the Acorn cup gall, but each of these has its own distinctive form.

Some common oak-apple-forming species are the Biorhiza pallida gall wasp in Europe; Amphibolips confluenta in eastern North America,;[2] and Atrusca bella in western North America.[1] Oak apples may be brownish, yellowish, greenish, pinkish or reddish.

 Now am I the only one who didn’t know all this?

With thanks again to Lucy for hosting ‘Follow a tree’

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12 thoughts on “My over-the-road-oak May

  1. Lucy Corrander

    I knew about oak apples – but not about the Marble Gall or the other ones. Did you find out whether they can damage the tree? It’s a lovely name – oak apple. Shame oaks don’t produce fruit we can eat.

    Reply
  2. Chloris

    An interesting post, Annette. I have never heard of the Marble Gall before. I thought that there was just one sort of oak apple. Your tree does have an amazing view.

    Reply
  3. Chloris

    Sorry I called you Annette, I saw the name before mine and it stuck in my mind. Annette is following a lovely copper beech not an oak.
    What is your name? I can’t keep calling you Duver

    Reply
      1. Chloris

        Not really. Neither am I the Nymph of the Blessed Isles . And I’ m not actually married to Zephyrus, God of the West Wind. Although I do grow Jerusalem artichokes…
        I’ m so sorry for the deception.

      2. Lucy Corrander

        I’m beginning to wonder all over again – Jerusalem Artichokes and The West Wind may well be cousins.

  4. Pingback: My over-the-road-oak August | Duver Diary

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