What is a Deciduous Tree?

What is a deciduous tree? It’s a tree that loses its leaves in the fall. In the autumn, it loses all its leaves and becomes a wintry looking thing, one of the skeletons of winter along the landscape. It isn’t the frost that kills the leaves, it’s a natural process that the tree goes through while it makes chemical conversions through the winter, to return in the spring with a blast of bright green shoots that turn into the fresh greenery of the new season. The oak is a perfect example of a deciduous tree. However, the California Live Oak is an exception, keeping most of its leaves all winter long, leaving nesting and hiding places for birds and squirrels.  Suellen Ocean is the author of Acorns and Eat’em, a how-to vegetarian cookbook and field guide for eating acorns. Find it here: http://www.amazon.com/Acorns-Eatem-How–Vegetarian-Cookbook/dp/1491288973

Gardening and Agriculture Without Honey Bees? The EPA Steps In

Honeybees have dwindled in my garden and throughout the United States. I believe other countries are worried too. Scientists and bee keepers blame the use of pesticides but the large chemical corporations that profit from selling pesticides chose to blame it on other factors, like mites. Reuters News is reporting that the US Environmental Protection Agency has placed the protection of bees high on their priority list. The news is that the US has agreed to fund over $450,000 for research projects aimed at reducing the use of pesticides in order to protect honeybees. Here’s hoping the coming years will find much less pesticide use and a strong honey bee population to pollinate our crops.  Suellen Ocean is the author of Acorns and Eat’em, a how-to vegetarian cookbook and field guide for eating acorns. Find it here: http://www.amazon.com/Acorns-Eatem-How–Vegetarian-Cookbook/dp/1491288973

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Gathering Acorns… Which Acorns Are OK?

If you aren’t used to gathering acorns, the pretty little brown things lying on the ground look just fine but an experienced gatherer knows otherwise. Last years worm eaten, faded and empty acorns often remain lying on the ground. Once you pick up a fresh acorn, feel its weight and admire it’s brown beauty and compare it to an old one, you’ll understand. There’s a huge difference. Early in the season, an oak may begin dropping acorns that aren’t quite ripe or developed. It will also begin dropping green acorns. Wait for the fully developed acorns to fall and wait for the green acorns to turn brown. When the rain comes, heavy storms sometimes bury the acorns in a little dirt. This is OK. They are fine once they are rinsed off. If you wait long enough and the animals don’t cart away the acorns, these rains may bring the acorns to sprout. This is OK too as long as there is no green on it, for example, beginning to grow into a baby oak. So for young sprouts, just a little sprout is fine. If there is any nutmeat left in a sprouted acorn that has a sprout up to an inch, break the sprout off and proceed as you would with un-sprouted acorns.  Suellen Ocean is the author of Acorns and Eat’em, a how-to vegetarian cookbook and field guide for eating acorns. Find it here: http://www.amazon.com/Acorns-Eatem-How–Vegetarian-Cookbook/dp/1491288973

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The Battle Between Our Higher and Lower Selves

The battle between our higher and lower selves rages constantly. It’s a cycle that goes round and round. When our lower self pushes us to make unhealthy choices it’s as natural as soil erosion on a rainy day. It’s nature’s way to break us down physically so that we’ll be fodder for the next cycle of life. There’s nothing we can do to change that. But we can slow it down. We throw mulch on our yards to keep the rain from washing our topsoil away. So if we want to live longer we should listen when our higher self says, “Don’t do that… not good”. Suellen Ocean is the author of the historic novel The Lies of the Lion Available here:

http://www.amazon.com/Lies-Lion-Lions-Trace/dp/0965114074

eBooks and computer downloads available through Smashwords:

https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/ocean

eBook at Barnes & Noble:

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/lies-of-the-lion-suellen-ocean/1102338550?ean=2940016618999