Monday, September 26, 2011

Fuzzy Balls, Galls and Other Noteworthy Blemishes

I've noted with interest my little burley oak tree on the front lawn has been developing the most interesting growths on its leaves over the past month or two.  I thought I share these with you - little orange fuzzy balls.  I'm sure if I tore one apart there would be a little critter ensconced within.

As they say, curiosity killed the cat.  Here's what is inside of a goldenrod gall (left) and oakleaf gall (right). Remember though, satisfaction brought it back!

It's also been a banner year for galls in the goldenrod plants - not that that particularly distresses me.  They do make for interesting natural shapes.  I think there must be something creative that could be made from them, as they are everywhere.  Maybe I could do some wood burning on a dried one - idea for the winter months.

Goldenrod afflicted with gall.
This is a willow, with some sort of blackspot.
Goldenrod with triple galls.

I don't spray my apple trees, so I get the most gnarly, horrible looking specimens, but they do have some merit from an artistic standpoint - much more interesting than the picture perfect globes, available in the supermarket these days.  Of course it makes me wonder just how much insecticide was used to produce that kind of perfection.

A wasp and ladybug enjoying the fruits of my labours.

Scab and rust combined....mmmmmm!
This tree is just located across the road from us.  Isn't this one ugly looking knot?  I'm amazed the tree still keeps growing.  I wonder if plants develop cancer cells, and if so is this some sort of chronic manifestation of such?

And that is about all I have to say for today.

Musings and meanderings from the Musical Gardener.


  1. Isn't it amazing what's around if we only take the time to look. Thanks for an interesting read.

  2. Oh no, no, no. That tree's knots are "ugly." They're "unique," and make for a much more interesting picture.

  3. I find oddity much more interesting than perfection.

  4. Great photos! I'm all for ugly apples. That said, we have a neighbour who doesn't spray and she still gets the most beautiful fruit off her apple tree! Lucky.

    we have a huge burr oak in our back pasture. I will have to check and see if it has fuzzy balls! :)


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