Tree Following: March 2015

Shumard Oak (Quercus shumardii)
Shumard Oak (Quercus shumardii)

Month number three of following a tree with Lucy at Loose and Leafy is here. How time flies! The tree I’m following this year is a Shumard Oak (Quercus shumardii). I was pretty darn certain my tree would be budding out by this time but that hasn’t happened.

Right now the buds are small and shiny, as if in limbo, waiting to open up. Several weeks of below normal temperatures, a couple of hard freezes, some snow and some ice have kept the tree dormant. Note the pretty olive color at the top of the twig below. This type of coloring is a trait of the Shumard Oak.

Shumard Oak (Quercus shumardii)
Shumard Oak (Quercus shumardii)

Perhaps there’s a reddish tint to the tree that wasn’t there last month, a sign of the burgeoning buds. Or perhaps its just my imagination.

Shumard Oak (Quercus shumardii)
Shumard Oak (Quercus shumardii)

The reddish shimmer seems a bit more obvious in the photograph below. Wishful thinking?

Shumard Oak (Quercus shumardii)
Shumard Oak (Quercus shumardii)

Here’s an interesting knot in the trunk of the Shumard Oak. This formed after a limb was removed some years back.

Shumard Oak (Quercus shumardii)
Knot On Trunk Of Shumard Oak (Quercus shumardii)

The trunk of the Shumard Oak is very straight. It’s basically the same size ten feet up as it is at ground level.

Shumard Oak (Quercus shumardii)
Shumard Oak (Quercus shumardii) Trunk At Ground Level

The American Goldfinches (Spinus tristis) are still occupying  the Shumard Oak. Several nyjer feeders hang from its branches and beckon them throughout the day. This little guy and a bunch of his friends watched me today as I inspected the tree and took my pictures. He seemed a bit put out!

American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis) In Shumard Oak (Quercus shumardii)
American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis) In Shumard Oak (Quercus shumardii)

By this time next month I’ll be able to report some drastic changes in this tree’s appearance.

Everything you ever wanted to know about the Shumard Oak can be found on this fact sheet from U. S. Trees of Texas!

Thanks very much to Lucy at Loose and Leafy for hosting Tree Following. Want to join in? Click on the link for information on how to get started.

See you next month!

Advertisements

20 thoughts on “Tree Following: March 2015

  1. I’ll be very interested to see your photos as we go through the seasons. I think we have these oaks here in Mississippi. For years I’ve been saying “that’s an oak, and that’s an oak” without knowing what kinds of oaks they are. Your photos will help me ID the Shumard Oak.

    Like

    • Shumard Oaks are native to the southeast U.S. and are common in your area, as are a number of other oaks, so you may very well be seeing Shumards. I hope my “tree following” will help you out! They’re really beautiful trees.

      Like

  2. Great post! Shumards are extra gorgeous – I can’t wait to see yours year ’round. It seemed like some of the Shumards held on to their leaves an extra long time in Central Texas this year. I was wondering if that would shift all the rest of their budding and leafing out to later in the spring as a result. Time will tell and we’ll rely on you to document it for the rest of us.

    Like

    • Hmm, that’s an interesting thought. Ours kept their leaves into the second week of December, which does seem a bit later than usual here also. I’ll keep a close watch on them this year. I guess it really just depends on how early or late the hard freezes begin. I’ll do my utmost to document the seasonal changes in this tree!!

      Like

  3. It’s a delight to read about your Shumard–it’s a beautiful tree, from bark to leaves to emerging buds. Mine is just about to send out its blooming tassels, so yours shouldn’t be far behind. I don’t have as many goldfinches in mine, but the Carolina Chickadees and the Black-crested titmice seem to like it.

    Like

  4. It is a very handsome tree. I shall rely on you to tell me all about the Shumard Oak.as the year goes on. It is a tree that I have never seen until I saw it on your blog.

    Like

  5. Thank you for visiting my tree following post and leaving a comment that made me smile. I also love lichen and enjoyed the photo in a later post, the colour and texture are always so vibrant and interesting. You live in a different continent but our oak looks similar – waiting for warmer weather before the buds burst!

    Like

  6. I’m hooked on bark and trunks and admire the knot in your tree. It’s very sculptural and reminds me of the old Green Man images.

    Like

Please leave a comment. You'll make my day!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s