Thursday, September 2, 2010

A crop of apples on my oak tree?

Close up of oak tree in my backyard.

Another view

I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw what was growing on one of our oaks in the back of our property a few days ago. Was the oak really a peach or apple tree?. How could I think that could be but there they were and they looked almost ready for plucking. I walked closer to touch them. They were hard and smooth. What the heck I thought to myself. They were absolutely beautiful. I had to leave to go to an appointment and so could not stick around to do some investigation. When I got home , I went to my computer as soon as I could. Oak Apple Galls!!! It seems several species of  gall wasps are the cause. They insert their eggs into a vegetatve bud on the tree. A protective surrounding forms around it. When the galls mature females emerge from some of the galls and males from the others. They mate and the gall shrinks and blackens. I felt let down because I wanted so badly for it to be a fruit tree. It was so lovely and I wanted to eat the fruit. Yet, in all in all the beauty remains no matter what caused it. Sort of like finding beauty in high desert thorny wild thickets or green algae on a lake surface.

High Desert Seduction
Pastel on Canson- Mi Tientes Paper
19 x 25

              Tree Shadows        Sold
19 x 25
Pastel on Colorfix Pastel Paper

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