It’s acorn time, and I’ve been timing the fall. Each one may only weigh about 3 grams, but they’re bullet-shaped and nuggety. They crash through the canopy with surprising force, then thud to the ground in such a way as to make you mighty glad you weren’t in the direct firing-line.
For the first ten minutes (roughly), there was occasionally 30 seconds between acorn-falls, but it was frequently less than 10 seconds, so I was estimating an average of just under 20 seconds, so 3 – 4 per minute. Then I thought it was worth being a bit more accurate, and set a timer going on my phone. In the next ten minutes, only one fell, and gusts of wind didn’t seem to alter the figure in any way.
All that aside (since there’s so little to conclude), the ground is littered with hundreds, if not thousands of the things. One year the kids and I counted some sample sections, and projected the figures to estimate a total of 600kg of acorns (about 20,000 of them) lying on the ground at that moment. It turns out that that was by far the heaviest crop we’ve had in the ten years we’ve been here, but it says something about the potential.
It also says something about waste. Being over a lawn, it’s unlikely that a single one of these acorns lying around me will germinate. I can’t help but stretch the analogy, and wonder if there’s this many seeds or blessings falling around me, and that only one or two – if I’m lucky – will grow into anything.
But then the analogy broadens, and I think about the number of birds that feed on these acorns over autumn and winter – how even though this is MY tree (in my head), what it produces is not only for my benefit. Maybe the truth extends, and while this incredible canopy over me produces countless seeds, there’s more going on than my blessing, teaching or nurturing.
As hard as it is for me to accept, maybe it’s not all about me.
The oak today – 25th March 2013, 12:11 pm