Plant ID forum: Please Identify this shrub

Views: 506, Replies: 6 » Jump to the end
Name: E Kelley
Acworth, Georgia
edkelley0
Apr 16, 2017 7:33 PM CST
There is an under story shrub [abt 30 in tall] in the back yard that has just bloomed. It has oak type leaves with sinusoidal edges. The blooms are white puff balls which contain seeds. Can you identify it from the attached photos.
Thumb of 2017-04-17/edkelley0/3d3029


Thumb of 2017-04-17/edkelley0/128481

It also has several reddish brown seed pods abt 3/8 in diameter.
[Last edited by edkelley0 - Apr 16, 2017 7:44 PM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #1416687 (1)
Name: John
Scott County, KY (Zone 5b)
You can't have too many viburnums..
Region: United States of America Region: Kentucky Farmer Cat Lover Birds Bee Lover
Butterflies Enjoys or suffers hot summers Enjoys or suffers cold winters Dog Lover Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Image
ViburnumValley
Apr 16, 2017 9:23 PM CST
Your leaf is certainly from an Oak (Quercus sp.), and it is from one of the species that belong to the White Oak group, like Quercus alba or Quercus bicolor.

The fuzzy ball in your image is NOT a bloom, and the "puffball" does not contain seeds. That is an oak gall, which is formed by the action of an insect that uses the tree in part of its life cycle. You can do an internet search, and find a lot of information about galls on oaks and the insects that participate in their formation.

Oak reproductive parts are catkins, which produce pollen which blows in the wind to pollinate the female reproductive parts on these trees.
John
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Image
DaisyI
Apr 17, 2017 12:47 AM CST
I agree
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

Webmaster: osnnv.org
Name: E Kelley
Acworth, Georgia
edkelley0
Apr 17, 2017 7:27 AM CST
Thank You! I'm pretty ignorant re galls. I had supposed that they were the husky balls you frequently see, for example the reddish balls also on the bush. But assumed the puff balls were flowers...Thanks for the education.
Name: John
Scott County, KY (Zone 5b)
You can't have too many viburnums..
Region: United States of America Region: Kentucky Farmer Cat Lover Birds Bee Lover
Butterflies Enjoys or suffers hot summers Enjoys or suffers cold winters Dog Lover Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Image
ViburnumValley
Apr 17, 2017 9:39 PM CST
You are quite welcome. Thank you for the opportunity to pontificate...

Galls come in an amazing variety of forms! Some are husky; some are red; some are smooth hard spheres; one type reminds me of a golf ball, or a ping pong ball with really thin surface. Most of the time, the gall is unique to the species of tree, along with the insect that participates.

Nature is an incredibly interesting affair, and the insect/tree relationships that create these forms are indecipherably wonderful.

John
Name: E Kelley
Acworth, Georgia
edkelley0
Apr 24, 2017 10:35 PM CST
Thank you for identifying my white oak bush and the information on galls. I am still curious about the puffball nature of the gall. No shell, just the fibrous radials and the "seeds" down inside the base of the ball. These "seeds" do not look like insect pupae or larvae. Have you ever seen this type of gall?

I'm a little embarrassed that I couldn't identify the bush as a White oak. I just never could find an oak leaf image online nor in a reference book with the shallow sinusoidal scalloped margin. BTW I enjoyed your pontification.
Name: John
Scott County, KY (Zone 5b)
You can't have too many viburnums..
Region: United States of America Region: Kentucky Farmer Cat Lover Birds Bee Lover
Butterflies Enjoys or suffers hot summers Enjoys or suffers cold winters Dog Lover Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Image
ViburnumValley
Apr 25, 2017 9:25 PM CST
You can google around and find extraordinary information online, or visit an educational/library institution and look at some entomological texts to learn more about this interesting topic.

Here are a couple references:
https://entomology.ca.uky.edu/...
(my alma mater)

Wool Sower Galls

These are wasp galls that appear on white oak in early summer and resemble toasted marshmallows. One gall is actually a group of small hairy galls joined at a common spot on a twig. They can be pulled apart to see seed-like structures that contain the developing wasps.

A few more:
http://www.missouribotanicalga...

http://www.the-understory.com/...

Fun stuff...
John

« Garden.org Homepage
« Back to the top
« Forums List
« Plant ID forum
Only the members of the Members group may reply to this thread.

Member Login:

Username:

Password:

[ Join now ]

Today's site banner is by Fleur569 and is called "Orchids on a Wagon Wheel"