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.
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.
The reddish shimmer seems a bit more obvious in the photograph below. Wishful thinking?
Here’s an interesting knot in the trunk of the Shumard Oak. This formed after a limb was removed some years back.
The trunk of the Shumard Oak is very straight. It’s basically the same size ten feet up as it is 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!
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!