Bare Bones

After several hard freezes, the skeletal systems of trees and shrubs stand stark against the sky.cabinThis hunting cabin was on the property when we bought the place.  It required major renovation to be inhabitable.  Now we use it for extra guests.  This  Popular tree has survived many different droughts.

treePopular trees have a fascinating branch growth pattern.  The leaves rustling in the breeze soothes what ails a body.

treetrunkThe rough, thick bark can easily be peeled off.  Of course, that is not recommended,  but sometimes chunks get knocked off.

deadoatMany majestic Spanish Oaks stood tall in the yard of the stone cabin.  But many years of drought has felled all of them.  Spanish Oaks are not as hardy as some other oaks.  Extreme heat, lack of water, and oak blight has killed more oaks than can be counted across Texas.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/12/20/us-drought-trees-texas-idUSTRE7BJ20M20111220

Since I don’t want to sit and cry over them, for now I consider them as sculptures in the landscape.

fallintreesThey are all around the perimeter of the house.

deadtreeThankfully, they were not close enough to the house to fall on it.  One day we heard a loud whack as a huge branch fell from this tree.  We were grateful no one was standing nearby – especially our grand kids.

postThis is the remains of a hitchin’ post for horses.

mesquiteMesquites are considered a menace because they take water from other trees.  They are almost impossible to eradicate.  Everyone has a remedy to suggest.  But still they survive. pecan2The state tree is the pecan.  All the pecans have dropped from the husks.

tickle2This small native Texas tree is called Tickle Tongue (Zanthoxulum clava-herculis).  Other names include Hercules’Club, Prickly Ash, and Toothache tree.  When the leaves or bark are chewed, it numbs the inside of the mouth.  It’s said that native Indians and early pioneers used this tree to ease toothaches.

“No winter lasts forever; no spring skips its turn.”  Hal Borland