Thursday, May 23, 2013

But I was always told that oaks are slow growing trees... right?

A major reason people don't plant more oaks is the widespread - yet mind blowingly stupid - notion that oaks are slow growing.  Slow growing?  Cripes, I have customers texting me nearly daily photographs tracking growth. 

A customer in the panhandle of Florida planted 18" tall sawtooth oak seedlings in March. On May 7 he texted this photo with the caption "It will be out (the top of the tube) tomorrow."  That's a 4ft tree tube.   That means the tree had already grown 30 inches in about 60 days - 1/2 inch per day - despite being newly planted (so much for "transplant shock") and despite March and April being much cooler and cloudier than usual for the area.

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The next day, May 8, he texted me another photo with the succinct caption: "It did."

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Two days later - 2 flippin' days later - on May 10 he sent me this one:

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Five days later he sent this one:

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For those of you keeping score at home, on May 7 the tree was tickling the top of a 48 inch tall tree tube.  On May 15 is was 56 inches tall, growing at a rate of 1 inch per day... and the growing season has barely begun.

Corn is jealous of growth like that.   And no, my customer did not trade the family cow for a bag of magic acorns.  Somewhere in the panhandle of Florida a dude is sitting on a lawn chair with a cold beer watching an oak tree grow.

My point:  Plant oaks.  They grow way, way faster than you think, especially when you give them the protection and care they need/deserve.