Some facts about oak trees
The oak tree is actually a member of the beech family, and has the latin name quercus or lithocarpus.
They are broad-leaved decidious trees, and oak trees need a healthy and fertile soil to grow in. They shed their leaves once per year, and yield seedsacornsin order to procreate.
A nice healthy mature oak tree can suck up about 50 or more gallons of water PER DAY through their root system. Naturally, the tree 'sweats' some of the water oat via evapouration through its leaves, a process called transpiration.
The tree can live for over 200 years, and trees for use in furniture or doors are typically 100 years old before they are felled. One of the oldest oak trees is about 400 years old, and measures 105 feet tall and 32 feet in circumferencenow that's a big tree!
Like all living things, trees have a reproductive cycle. Oak trees typically start making acorns at around the age of 20 - 50 years, peaking at around 100 years when the tree produces it's fullest yield of acorns (about 2000 acorns from one tree in a year). Acorns are most commonly produced in the Autumn, and nutrition and health of the tree is a contributing factor in acorn productionjust like in humans!
Cycle of a tree
The acorns start as flowers in a matured tree, and tiny 'nubbins' form after the flowering. These are the start of the full acorn, and the acorn doesn't have an easy journey at all. Weather, insects and other factors contribute to the fact that out of about 10,000 acorns, only one will ever become a tree.
Once the tree sheds an acorn, the acorn doesn't always get a prime fertile landing spot. Shortly after, the tree sheds its leaves, which can bury the acorn in a dark and damp covering, where they rot.
Animals play a big part in making sure the acorns find a good home... for instance, squirrels find acorns and bury them for later consumption... it's these buried acorns which stand a better chance. Thanks Mr Squirrel!
The acorn is a nutritious housing for the seed, and once the right balance of weather and nutrition take over, the seedling will develop, eventually becoming a tree (don't forget, only one in 10,000 will make it!)
And then, the cycle starts again. Oak trees live in decidious forests, where nature's balance and harmony is critical.
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