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Alphabe Thursday O is for Oak

February 27, 2014

Oak GallThis week’s contribution could go anywhere pretty much but I will go for O is for Oak Tree.  The female  

Cynips quercusfolii is a small black gall wasp, is noted for her unusual nest making.  In the spring she punctures a home for her eggs in the soft young buds of the oak tree.  The tree naturally protects itself against the ‘invasion’ and forms little nutlike growths around the wasp holes.  These oak galls are collected before the wasps hatch and used to make ink of the most intense black. It was used throughout the medieval times and was probably learned from the Arabs who used it for ink, dying clothes and mascara.

The ink contains tannin and is  highly astringent and found in many other plants but it is not in such a concentrated form.  Tea leaves can also be used to make ink.

alphabet thursday

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12 Comments leave one →
  1. February 27, 2014 10:12 am

    wow thank you that was fascinating

  2. February 27, 2014 2:19 pm

    Oak trees are so beautiful and strong. My in-laws built much of their home from oak. This was in the late 40s. My FIL used oak trees from their property. He cut them down, hauled them to a logging mill and had the trees turned into lumber. All I can say is this, that house is really sound! Good “O” post. 🙂

  3. February 27, 2014 2:32 pm

    Fascinating post for O and lovely photo ~ thanks, xxx

    artmusedog and carol
    http://www.acreativeharbor.com

  4. February 27, 2014 5:10 pm

    I love it! I always thought that Gall was from the tree itself, not the results of an insect invasion. Thank you for the factoid for my arsenal!

  5. February 27, 2014 5:58 pm

    Interesting information, nice to learn something new!

  6. February 27, 2014 11:07 pm

    I love oak furniture – great post!

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