Monday, November 2, 2009

Everything on The Lazy A is A-Oa-K ....

With the gorgeous weather we have had so far this week here in Christchurch, New Zealand,
Ive been outside tidying up the yard. This is what I found below the elderberry tree. It was as if it were sheltering them from me...

 Mr 13 owned up to having planted a rather large handful of acorns in the Autumn, and today I separated out some of the new little oak seedlings. Theyre rather precious,  thinking about their future potential size and not looking too bad at all. Varying sizes and shapes, some will not possibly be suitable as big trees, but Im learning as I go...

Firstly, transplanting oak seedlings isnt as easy as I first thought. Oak trees have rather large straight tap roots. These would be about four or five months old, and are between 20-30 cm long, half of that is tap root which extends from out of the base of the acorn which is, in most cases, still attached to the seedling, possibly as a food supply? for the new growth. Planting them in long containers (in my case cut down coke bottles or milk containers) was fine as long as the hole was deep and the tap root was as undisturbed as possible.
They are all looking peachy at the moment, so maybe I was lucky! A little trip down the road to have a look at the parent tree meant I could identify the trees as Quercus Alba.L which is White Oak. Beautiful!! I just might end up with my grove of oaks... OK, maybe not me, my grandchildren might :)

Did you know you can eat acorns? Have a look here if you're interested - COOKING WITH ACORNS
The Sioux Indians use acorn in their cooking because they were plentiful and easy to store (away from squirrels!)
I didn't know much about this, but these kinds of things fascinate me, being interested in self-sufficiency and survival skills...
INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT OAK TREES - Oak trees live for up to 200 years. I guess that means careful consideration before planting is essential!

And in case you want to try planting your own acorns... heres a page that explains it all ... Gosh I love the internet!! :) HERE - COLLECT AND PLANT YOUR ACORNS

And on top of all that replanting, transplanting, repotting etc... The Aloes got some division to do - I got time yesterday to split up three of my bigger plants, and netted another 12 from them, they are splitting nicely, and growing strongly. Light, not heat is what they prefer. They go rather reddish brown around the edges if they are too hot. To use the aloes medicinally, they need to be rather larger than what I have yet. Im looking forward to making some burn cream when the plants mature considerably...

We have some seeds in pots, waiting for them to rear their tiny heads... Some motherwort, tansy, cabbage, lettuce, sunflower, pumpkin... Ive never had much luck with seeds, but hopefully that is about to change :)
Well thats all my garden news for now.

Thanks for listening :)
Take care

E Butterfly
Christchurch by The River

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