Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Life Goes On Like Gangbusters: An Orange Tree Story

Baby tree blooming next to storm-downed orange tree.
Life is surreal.  That's my theme for the month.  Between Hurricane Harvey and Halloween, life is indeed surreal.

A couple of weeks after the storm blasted over our house, we came home and took a look at the damage.  Our huge orange tree took flight, right out of the ground, roots and all.  Amazingly, we found that several baby orange trees were growing all around the spot where the "mother" tree had been.

Mother-tree out of the ground and cut off by a neighbor.
Within another week, the baby trees were blooming and starting to set little fruits.  The Texas A&M University tree expert who visited our town said that this happens off-season when trees are defoliated or otherwise threatened.  They think it's spring, and they bloom their hearts out.

Baby mandarin orange trees next to the hole.
It remains to be seen if these little guys will produce actual edible fruit after blooming in the fall instead of spring, but we do have pretty warm winters here in Rockport.  They must have sprouted from fallen oranges in previous years, and we didn't notice them.  So we shall see!

Another surreal thing is that my cardboard pots of orange seedlings from the last harvest in March, survived the hurricane and they are thriving.  They rode out the storm in the garage and are just as perky as ever.

Seedlings from last harvest.
In fact, the whole horticultural scene in our town is pretty darned perky.  Mother Nature is definitely bouncing back like gangbusters.

RIP, old friend.  Your legacy lives on.

For more about growing mandarin oranges, see my post:
In Love With Mandarin Oranges

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