Under an Oak

Inspired by this beautiful oak tree that we had a picnic under today, I return to the blog to record some of the current occurrences.

I have been very busy in the garden, but today’s post is about how we left home to meet friends in the next town and how much entertainment our two Little Fellas got out of this oak.

We met our new friends and had a bbq, then moved across to sit under the shade of this lovely tree. It was quite a hot day, but under this tree the breeze was just right and we sat in dappled light. Sheltered from the otherwise stark and intense southern sun.

Our boys played happily under the tree and then ventured into the limbs to climb and explore. They were scared and challenged by some of the situations they got themselves into, but they came away with more confidence and having had ‘a good day’.

They slept for a bit in the car on the way home. I was quietly amazed that they had kept themselves so entertained by this tree, not really venturing elsewhere to explore. It was reassuring that they can keep themselves entertained without extra toys or digital play-things.

7 thoughts on “Under an Oak

  1. This is what I remember about the apricot trees that used to live in the Santa Clara Valley. They are all gone now. It is saddening to think that the more than a million people who live there now do not know what it was like.

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    1. All the best for the season Tony. Trees transform an area I think. Even through their absence, they transform. As I prune various trees in the yard, it changes the environment. Visually and also by the application of mulch to the garden.

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      1. One of the friends we met trained as a tree surgeon and we both quite naturally climbed up into the tree – which is when he told me what he had trained in. He then went on to share several observations that he had quickly picked up, almost as second nature to him. Two of the large main trunks had actually crossed paths and ‘grafted’ into each other. There were two other longer branches that shared their support. One branch leaning on the other and then further out near the edge of the canopy they swapped and the supporter became the supported! I’m sure if we’d looked further we would have discovered other points of discussion just in this one tree!

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      2. Do you know what species of oak it is? Not many of the oaks that are native to the chaparral climates here commonly graft, although some do, and some that have multiple trunks are actually a few trees that grafted together. (They sometimes start out in clusters of different seedlings that were planted by squirrels, although that is not considered to be ‘grafted’, so much as simply multi trunked trees.)

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      3. I’ve no idea, sorry Tony. I will do a little research. I didn’t even bring a leaf home. There are several of them in the area and I suspect they preceded the planning of the park. They grow well in our south here and are often highly recommended in permaculture circles as suitable trees to surround buildings for their fire resistant properties and shading nature. There has been a very conscious movement over the last decade to move away from the highly volatile eucalyptus and instead plant trees such as oaks with many other beneficial properties – especially in areas where there is the room to do so such as on hobby farms or the borders of broad acreage. Our friends estimation was that this particular tree was possibly around the hundred year mark. Which makes sense. I suspect the area was possibly part of an old dairy farm which would fit with the context of a stand of reasonably mature oak trees. At least for Australian standards!

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  2. Hey, I can see your reply on my list, but can not find it here.
    Anyway, there is no need to identify the oak. It just does not look familiar. It is odd to think of an oak as less combustible than other trees, since the oaks that are native to the chaparral climates here are somewhat combustible. After the redwoods, which are not overly combustible, were clear cut harvested, oaks became more prominent, which is why so much of the forest burned last year. Fire got hot enough to kill redwoods that had survived several fires over the past few centuries.

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