Tree-Watching Project: Acorn Collections

September 4, 2012

These acorns are still green, not brown

” . . . the iconic image [is] of a brown, ovoid nut with a woody tam o’shanter top.  But the acorn is way more variable than that.  Tree lovers, collectors, and life list keepers take note:  a fine travel goal would be to collect one acorn from all seventy species of oak trees that grow in North America. . .”
—  Nancy Ross Hugo, Seeing Trees:  Discover the Extraordinary Secrets of Everyday Trees

I find acorns irresistible.  They are small treasures, pocketable, smooth to the touch, a pleasant round shape.  When I see them, I cannot help but take a handful home.  While I like Nancy Ross Hugo’s suggestion to collect acorns from all seventy species of oak trees, I take a far less scientific approach.  I just admire their beauty, without identifying their exact species.

One of my goals for my week off work was to paint something everyday.  Several of those watercolor sketches were devoted to acorns.  Here they are:

Watercolor sketch of oak leaf with green acorns

Specimens from my collection

Oak leaves with acorns

Another variety of oak leaves and acorns

Oak leaf with five acorns

A circle of acorns


8 Responses to “Tree-Watching Project: Acorn Collections”

  1. shoreacres Says:

    I love acorns, too. They’re wonderful falling on the tin roof of a cabin in the woods, and they’re great treats for pet squirrels. For years, my primary task every year was to gather, sort and freeze acorns for a pet squirrel. Pecans and apple bits are fine, but everyone likes a little gourmet food now and then!

  2. quixotree Says:

    Excellent goals…and then plant them all and find good homes for them. 70 more trees on the planet!

  3. melanyrae62 Says:

    I can’t look at an acorn without flashing on Jean Giorno’s beautiful book, ‘The Man Who Planted Trees’. The story is a good metaphor for your blog – each entry a seed of life.

  4. Sigrun Says:

    I really had no idea that there were seventy species of oak in the US?! Unbelievable! To collect one acorn from all seventy species sounds like the outline of an art project…

  5. […] Tree-Watching Project: Acorn Collections […]

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