Thursday, October 22, 2009


over cup oak (Quercus lyrata)
What at wonderful surprise it was to come across these sprouting acorns at a park in Urbana. My friend and I gathered up as many as we could. Yesterday, I went about the property and planted about 25 of these acorns. I planted them mostly in the fence rows where there are no oaks growing just a lot of mulberries and choke cherries. I do not know if they will make it but the rain today should really help to settle them in.

This is the acorn of the over cup oak (Quercus lyrata). So named because the cap of the acorn almost completely covers the nut. You cannot see that in these germinated acorns as the cap is gone. However, the leaves turn a beautiful shade of brown in the fall and are somewhat leathery. One might expect to find this tree in a park setting because it is tolerant of a lot of poor soils. But I was most impressed by the abundant crop of acorns that the tree had produced. Acorns are a wonderful food source for so many of the creatures and birds at Habitat Home. Here's hoping that these little acorns grow into mighty oaks.

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