4.18.2014

five cents a quart
...Thoreau's Journal: 18-Apr-1859

I am looking for acorns these days, to sow on the Walden lot, but can find very few sound ones. Those which the squirrels have not got are mostly worm-eaten and quite pulverized or decayed. A few which are cracked at the small (end), having started last fall, have yet life in them, perhaps enough to plant. Even these look rather discolored when you cut them open, but Buttrick says they will do for pigeon-bait. So each man looks at things from his own point of view. I found by trial that the last or apparently sound acorns would always sink in water, while the rotten ones would float, and I have accordingly offered five cents a quart for such as will sink.

5 comments:

Jeanette said...

As I was attempting to clean the oak, maple and beech leaves along with the acorns from my small zen pond at the side of my house, my mind wandered to this reading. I spent over an hour barely making headway on a small section, the tediousness making me crack up at the thought of 5 cents per quart of usable acorns. I am merely clearing. but to take each acorn (and we had a bountiful harvest last fall) and check its bouyancy (sp?) well, that just sounds like madness. Yet, I was calm and relaxed during my work - more than had for a long time. It almost left winter in a long ago memory.

Jan said...

What patience and faith it takes to plant oak trees from acorns. I'm impressed.

michael jameson said...

i have planted hundreds of acorns all over the place, for one reason the age of a mighty oak tree is immense and will have offspring as well and long after i am gone there will be life in nature that i helped survive!, they may continue for hundreds of years if urban sprawl does not kill them, and it is a very good feeling!. michael jameson oldantiqueguy@hotmail.com

michael jameson said...

in answer to your question,, i read some where, dont quote me!, nobel winning arch bishop paele said,,,, man is the only animal that guides his life from something that happened before he was born for something after he is dead!?

tommccubbin.com said...

Last year the gypsy moths ate the leaves from all the oak trees on my hillside. The moths have not returned this year, but if they do I would gladly give a nickle for each jar full of dead ones.