Roses » « Kosmoss

Tree Tuesday

This week we have a story tree from Nightjar and it’s a wonderful story of hope.

I was driving through an area that was badly affected by wildfires last year and stopped the car to quickly take this shot, because it shows the concept of “fire-adapted species” so well. Everything still looks horribly devastated. In the foreground there is a completely destroyed orchard, in the background a completely destroyed pine plantation. Trees are still standing, but they are dead. Except… there is a survivor! The cork oak tree is resprouting all over and will regenerate soon! That’s what cork is for, to insulate the trunk from high temperatures protecting its core during a fire. It’s one thing to know this in theory, but to see the advantage of this strategy so clearly was quite enlightening.

Cork tree, ©Nightjar, all rights reserved

Thanks so much for sharing, Nightjar. I think it’s amazing that any living thing can survive a forest fire. Nature is so endlessly fascinating.

Roses » « Kosmoss


  1. lumipuna says

    I’ve understood that here in Finland, the ubiquitous scots pine often survives fires -- though probably only if the fire spreads in the undergrowth and not in the canopy. Natural forests in particular tend to have sparse canopies, more so than the modern planted pine forests, so the fire often only rakes (heh) the forest floor clean. It helps to have a relatively cool, damp climate, both in terms of trees surviving fires and in terms of humans controlling fires.

  2. Nightjar says

    I took the photo on a trip to my paternal grandfather’s birthplace to visit family. The whole trip was heartbreaking, we didn’t just see burnt trees but also burnt homes. 50 people died in these massive wildfires. Victims of climate change, though few people admitted that because at the time scoring political points was apparently more important. But I digress.



    The pines in the background are maritime pines and if you look in the upper right corner there is one or two that didn’t burn completely and still have some green branches. I suppose that’s what happens with scots pines if the fire isn’t too intense. But they are pines so they can’t resprout. I know that maritime pines also have a fire-adaptation strategy but it’s at the seed level.

    so the fire often only rakes (heh) the forest floor clean



    rq, thanks. I’m sorry about the blown out sky. I only had the compact camera with me (because I’m stupid and don’t plan ahead) and landscapes definitely aren’t my thing. Anyway, I hope it grows lusciously too! Now it needs 7 years or so to regrow the cork layer that burned and prepare itself for another fire. Nature knows its timings and needs well, problems arise when ignorant humans start meddling.

Leave a Reply