Friday, March 27, 2009

Leaf me alone!

Doesn't this look like a typical Fall picture?

Well, it's Springtime in Texas, when the Live Oaks drop their leaves, produce a phenomenal amount of dusty, lime-green pollen that covers everything in sight, drop the pollen in ugly brown piles and then leaf out with delicate new green leaves.

Ugly brown pollen covers the patio.
Dying brown leaves mixed in with bright, new foliage.
A few little leaves on their last leg.

So far, I haven't seen the caterpillars of the Oak Leaf roller yet. The normally arrive right in the middle of this leaf cycle, adding insult to injury with the mess by hanging from the trees, swaying in the breeze and getting in your hair! Ewwww.

Last year I posted about their arrival on March 29, so I know it won't be long now.


Janet said...

Ah spring, constantly changing. I will keep my fingers crossed for all your plants you have outside already.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Spring can have its drawbacks, such as pollen and worms that go plop. I bet your garden will be ok. 39 in spring doesn't feel as cold as 39 in fall.

Gail said...

Diana, It never occurred to me that the Live Oaks dropped their leaves almost all at once! Are they shredded and used as mulch in your garden? In about a week or so the yard will be green with porch will, too! gail

getgrounded said...

Noooo, not the worms! I was hoping the wind has blown them away this year :). I have so many oak trees at my front door that it feels like Halloween on my porch during those couple of weeks o' worms. Hate it!

Good post,'s funny, I'm so used to the spring leaf drop that it doesn't even seem out of the ordinary anymore. Good reminder for me that the rest of the world doesn't always do things our way. Just another way to Keep Austin Weird, right?

Carol at Lost Valley Gardens said...

Hate the leaf and 'noodle' drop, but love the summer shade. I don't know what we would do without our live oaks. I think half of the soil I have in the rockier areas of my land is a result of years of degraded oak leaves.

Diana said...

Janet - Thanks for the good karma. And of course we have the crazy wind, too, which makes covering anything nigh on impossible!

Lisa -- I'll keep telling myself (and the plants) that it really doesn't feel as cold at 39 because it's spring! Think they will buy it?!

Gail -- Those live Oak leaves will survive nuclear holocaust, they are so hard. More like plastic packaging than leaves, so no, they can't be used for that. Can't really go into our compost piles, either, they just won't break down! Don't you hate that pollen mess?

GetGrounded -- Yes, the worms are coming. I keep thinking they might be better this year. I haven't seen any yet....I'm sure I just jinxed it!

Carol / Lost -- I admit, I do like the shade in the summer, and I don't mind the leaves falling, I just wish they did it in fall when things are dying back some and we are preparing for mess, not gussying up for spring!

Pam/Digging said...

We are still marveling over the leaf drop. I've lived in Austin many a year without paying any attention to the spring leaf drop, but now that we have a yard full of 'em, we can't get over the MESS. :-)

My son was cleaning the pool a couple of days ago when a gust of wind hit the trees above his head. His look of bewilderment was priceless as the leaves just *showered* down on him and littered the surface of the water.

Dee/reddirtramblings said...

Hi Diana, we don't have live oaks, but our post oaks do the same thing. Stupid trees. Don't they know when fall is? The black jack oaks are also blooming. It's a festive pollen season here too. I take a lot of Clarinex. :) ~~Dee

Diana said...

Pam -- it is a MESS isn't it? And you can't do much with their either, since they are so hard and break down over eons. One of several new challenges you have in the new garden. Too bad the deer don't eat them!

Dee -- Post oaks, huh? They must not have gotten the message that leaves drop in the fall! How did you fare with last night's storm? It was 38 here, and very windy, but that's it.