Monday, November 16, 2015

Is that a Balsam, Fir, or Pine tree? I can't deciduous.

You know, one lawn chore I really don't mind doing is raking leaves.  We don't have that many leaves because we don't exactly have a forest of trees here at the Lazy 'C' Ranch, you understand, but when they come down, they have to meet their fortune at the hands of a rake.

It's my long-held contention that most leaves that people rake are not their own.  A lot of what's on your yard right now belongs to your neighbor's maple or elm or ash or pecan (Southern US only) tree. But it all works out, because YOUR leaves wind up next door, or around the corner.  And then someone else is raking them up.

Next time you find yourself raking up the pieces of tree remains that cover your yard in a foot-deep river, here are some leaf vocabulary words to run over in your mind. 

The abscission layer is the barrier of special cells created at the base of petioles in autumn.  The petiole, as any schoolkid knows, is the stalk connecting the blade of a leaf to the stem.

Now, where's a schoolkid, preferably one with a rake, now that the leaves are all over the yard?  Oh, that's right, they're up at the school, learning about abscission layers and petioles and I don't know what-all else.

The forest gumps who know about these things estimate that the average big oak tree dumps 254,480 leaves on an unwilling homeowner, all of which have to be scooped up and put in XXX large plastic bags.  These bags are sold in packs of 24 and come with cuts and rips in them, made by the guy who boxes them up at the factory, so that just after you fill them up with leaves, the bag breaks, and leaves spill all over the yard.

Just so's you know, he used to work for the Trojan company, doing the same work...

No comments: