At Incoming Bytes we love oak trees like mad, even if the leaves on our oak trees fall off for half of the year. We have 'Black Oak' OR Swamp White Oak or Scub Oak or , um..... 'Quercus something-or-other' oak.
Well, okay we don't know exactly what species they are, so we're happily not pretending to know.
The point is, the leaves turned brown and fell off. These beautiful oaks get acorns like other oaks, the squirrels even steal them and save them to eat. I've even been known to eat a few. No doubt, they're Quercus-something-or-other. Maybe they're just neatly hybridized for our NW Ontario climate, but I've seen them along the river-banks in Southern Manitoba too.
This is what the leaves look like, at this time of year, you'll just have to imagine they're green and they do look a lot like swamp White oak. These are kind of brown and faded too, but still a handsome leaf, don't you think? The back of the leaf is an even lighter tan.
|Oak leaf (faded)|
|A twin pair of Oak leaves|
Is that flat end a detail of hybridization and adaptation to the severe cold here? No matter what they are, rightly or wrongly, the local name for these is scrub oak, or Black Oak. When wet, the trees are almost black as Ebony. Ebony the pup, that is.
|Gnarly Oak Twigs|
But how about that gnarly bark and twigs? The bark is quite unusual. Here's another photo of it.
|Amazing Oak bark|
Here's what a twinned 15 year old Oak looks like. It is quite elegant bare, but stunning in full leaf. The pup, Ebony, is jet black, making the oak bark look lighter gray even though it is quite dark-coloured. The puppy, --except for the white spots, is so black it's even difficult to take a picture of her in full sunlight, but it's dull and overcast in this picture. She's a real poser too. Notice her two ears are stuck up like the twin trunks?
Here's what the trunk looks like close up:
As you can see, several types of mosses love the thick, rough bark. Even though this bark looks quite beaten up and stressed by life, the tree is absolutely healthy and normal. Tough stuff !
If anyone really knows for sure what species this oak is, please tell us.
Why?.......um.....We may be moderately Acer-savvy, but we're also definitely 'Quercus-challenged'.
That's my story and I'm sticking to it.