Shaun Haddock's blog

Pollen Poachers

Bees are thieves! It’s official! After my recent note pointing out that bees were seemingly harvesting pollen from a Quercus suber without any commensurate benefit to the tree, serendipitously the latest issue of the magazine The Plantsman contained an article giving a synopsis of research into "bee plants" by the National Botanic Garden of Wales, prompted by the alarming dip in global bee numbers.

Stretching the Rules

An oak which breaks the rules... Do oaks have rules? Well, I think so: the rule of survival of the fittest implies that all unnecessary branch structure is unaffordably costly in resources – the aim of a tree should be to display the maximum leaf area for photosynthesis attached to the minimum possible structure. And the culprit in question? Quercus saltillensis.

A Forum for Garden-Sourced Oak Seed?

It was a mast year in 2017 here in southwest France, spreading acorns so thickly under some trees they formed a solid carpet. So Quercus pubescens is evidently not in danger for now, but what of less plentiful species elsewhere? 

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