Friday 4 October 2013

Cone Crop

    Yesterday, while I was admiring the yellow leaves of autumn, I noticed the especially heavy cone crop on this spruce tree.  I can’t remember ever seeing a spruce so heavily laden.  During my many years working at the BC Forest Service, the silviculture people would often talk about the cone crop.  They were in charge of replanting and had to gather cones to start the seedlings.
    In the early days of my forestry career, they would sometimes go out in the spring with a rifle to shoot off the green cones from the top of trees to check their progress.  Later they would hire a crew to cut down good trees and gather the sticky green cones which were sent off to a tree nursery and grown into seedlings that were used to replant logged out areas.  
    I realize that sometimes when a tree is great stress it puts out a lot of fruit just in case it is their last chance.  I am assuming that this tree is putting out so many cones because this summer has been such a good one for growing.

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