Monday, January 28, 2013

Trees in Winter

Pecan tree in overgrown pasture
I have been studying the way trees look this winter. I can recognize how different species grow by the way their branches form. The bark of trees is more apparent.

Old biddies
Oaks have a masculine look in that they grow a strong main stem with smaller branching off periodically. Much like the tree of life and trees found in fairy tales. There are three that stand together near the Happy Hour Mail Center that I have named the three old biddies.

Driving through the older sections of Warner Robins, the pruned Oaks along the roadways have lumps and scars from the loss of limbs. One oak makes me think of the unusual older woman who has weathered time with few wrinkles, scars or age marks on her skin. The bark is so sleek and smooth in comparison to the other trees on the road.

Pecans have a feminine shape in that they have a main stem which branches into a whirl of branches. Those in modern groves are pruned to delay this feature. But nature cannot be defeated. Why I would give feminine and masculine attributes are about as logical as the french giving every noun a feminine or masculine article instead of the all-purpose article "the" that we use in English.

Flock of red winged blackbirds.
I have not always bothered with looking at trees and birds. In my youth I always wondered why I could care less and others were fascinated. Now its me slowly searching for detail. Reveling in the wintering of the red winged blackbird and robin.

Red Winged Blackbirds in Pecan Grove
Row of Oaks on Davis Drive in Warner Robins, GA, USA
We had the thermometer drop below freezing about two nights ago. Even though it was about 25 degrees Fahrenheit (-5 degrees Celsius), I could feel a bit of spring. Looking at distant tree branches, there was a little red pigment from buds developing. Of course the Japanese magnolia was in full bloom. One of my apple trees had a few flower buds trying to develop.

Peach trees bloom in mid to late February. Peach farmers panic about losing their fruit to a freeze. If not enough freezes come through, they pay people to knock undeveloped fruit from their trees. Otherwise they will get many, many small knotty peaches.

They always say it is darkest before the dawn. It's always coldest before the spring. We have spring-like weather off and on between January and March. The grass is growing very green under the Pecan trees by the road. However, we are due at least three more hard freezes. The last usually the last week of March or first week of April.
This is actually a sunset

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