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What Tree Is This?

 
Brandon Greer
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Location: 1 Hour Northeast Of Dallas
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I have several of these trees on my land but don't know what they are. They grow very strangely. They can grow sideways and look kind of creepy my wife says. Their wood is very hard to cut with a chain saw and has yellow saw dust. They also have rose-life thorns growing from their stems. I've attached a few pics I took.

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Growing Sidways
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Leaves
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Branch With Thorns
 
Alder Burns
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My first guess would be osage orange (Maclura) You should see round green fruit starting to grow over the summer and in the fall they drop and are as big as an orange. It's a very useful tree, amenable to hedging, great firewood, rot-resistant as fence posts, and much prized by Native folks for bows. It also has quite a story regarding it's current range restriction being likely due to megafauna extinction.....
 
Brandon Greer
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Alder Burns wrote:My first guess would be osage orange (Maclura) You should see round green fruit starting to grow over the summer and in the fall they drop and are as big as an orange. It's a very useful tree, amenable to hedging, great firewood, rot-resistant as fence posts, and much prized by Native folks for bows. It also has quite a story regarding it's current range restriction being likely due to megafauna extinction.....


I've seen those green things (we called them horse apples) all my life. I think I do recall seeing a few on my land too but not sure. Just curious, are these trees good for hugelkultur?
 
Dan Boone
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They are slow to decay, so the conventional wisdom is that they aren't ideal for hugel. However, in a mix with other woods I should think they would be OK -- especially if you don't mind your hugel taking longer to fully decay into soil.

It's a pain to work with, though, between the hardness and the thorns and the droopy curves of all the smaller branches.
 
John Saltveit
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Traditionally, osage orange trees were used as a thorny fence. Also , they can have a certain kind of fruit grafted onto them, but I forget which variety.
Sorry,
John S
PDX OR
 
Dan Tutor
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Osage orange is one of the hardest and highest BTU rated woods. Also renowned as the best native bow wood. Wish I had some!
 
Dan Boone
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John Saltveit wrote:Also , they can have a certain kind of fruit grafted onto them, but I forget which variety.


OMG, John, you have NO idea how much excitement you caused here with that offhand remark. Osage orange trees are the dominant tree on the former-pasture areas of our land, and we consider them a trash tree for the most part, because they are such a pain and contribute so little (although we do have people who come to harvest bow wood). To be able to convert them into productive fruit trees via grafting? I never imagined!

So of course I hit the Google machine with great enthusiasm. The tree you remember is called the Che tree, and it sounds very promising. In order to not hijack this thread, I've created a thread just for them to share what I discovered.

Thank you thank you thank you!
 
Brandon Greer
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Sounds good! Thanks everyone.
 
David Goodman
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Yep. Che tree often is grafted onto Osage orange.

Also, the wood is fantastic stuff. Wonderfully hard and good for bows.
 
I agree. Here's the link: https://richsoil.com/wood-heat.jsp
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