Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Maple Seed Bounty

The maple trees caught my attention this spring. At first, I thought they were sickly with brown leaves,

but then I realized it wasn't leaves but rather loads and loads of seed pods dangling from the limbs.

Maples seeds are everywhere. As I drive down the driveway, the dried out seeds crackle and pop. Out of the corner of my eye, I catch a glimpse of one whirling and spinning madly down to earth like a miniature helicopter.

There are piles too! 

So, why so many this year?
 Is this some sign of things to come?

We had a dry and warm winter and no damaging frost, which created excellent conditions for the trees to produce a bumper crop of seeds this year. Stress can also cause trees to produce large amounts of seeds. Is this the trees' last hurrah before they die in some impending drought?

According to the NOAA, due to a weak La Nina, our area will experience, through July, normal to cooler temperatures with average precipitation. The trees should be fine!

With all these seeds, you might consider eating them! Squirrels love them. Maple seeds are edible and can be eaten raw and might be tossed into a salad. When cooked, they apparently taste like peas.

Guten Appetit! 

1 comment:

  1. I'm glad the summer should be mild. I wonder how the seeds taste on salads?