In my litany of gifts I was expecting from the European beech tree, I failed to mention the spring moment when the tree started dropping flowers. In view that I don’t get a chance to finish with the leaf hulls before the blooms start, I don’t know how I missed that, but I have been issued my reminder.
I was in a coffeeshop in Port Angeles, Washington one time when the guy next to me asked me where I was from (seriously, he did not ask me from whence I had come.) Actually, I am from right down the road in Poulsbo. Washington, but by then I was already living in Maryland. When I told him that, he nodded rather sagely and said “Hard woods” before going back to his coffee. It brought into sharp contrast my then and now – loggers vs. farmers at the coffee shop, fir and cedar vs. oak and yes, beech. Cones vs. nuts. All of that to say that nut bearing trees are different. In my naivete I never really thought about nut trees blooming at all, to be honest, though now I am familiar enough to have actually built structures, and not just guitars from the delicate little puffs of bloom. Yes, that is what I call them. Sure it is, as I am as I am taking the power blower to them yet again…trying to get them off the deck and steps before it rains and transforms their sodden little masses into paste…yes. Delicate wee puffs they are.
As to anything else I may have omitted about the tree, I apologize to the tree, hopefully far enough in advance to get a chance to clean up the bloom before the reminder is delivered.