Today’s Disturbing Biological Oddity
Posted on April 9, 2011 Posted by John Scalzi 36 Comments
And you say, what’s so odd or disturbing about buds on a tree? It’s spring, after all. Only this: These buds, and hundreds more, are on branches which have been severed from their tree since October. These branches have been dead for months.
So you know what this means, don’t you. Yes:
ZOMG ZOMBIE TREE RUN
You have been warned. Zombie tree is coming for you! Slowly.
That certainly would have made The Happening a whole lot more watchable.
Well, that made me spit orange Kool-Aid out my nose! I needed a good laugh after the day I’ve had today.
(BTW, you do know that trees set their buds in the fall for the following spring?)
I had the same thing happen to some witch hazel that I pruned one winter, and they budded in the spring. I’m sure there is a good scientific explanation for it. Or a miracle.
The only thing slower than a zombie human.
What kind of tree is it? Can I graft or plant zombie tree, can I?
(no really, there’s no nefarious plan here, look away, nothing to see)
THE CLEANSING FIRE IS THE ONLY CHANCE YOU’VE GOT!!!1!
They look like …
They look a lot like…
They Are Pussy Willows!
Zombie Pussy Willows demanding Bacon!
What will we do?what will we do watwilwedoesohnoeswatwill…
Nice Bacon, kitty
An interesting conceit, that of zombie plants, but of course parts of plants often aren’t smart enough to know they’re dead for a long time after they’ve been severed, and that can be on a scale of months when the temperature is low, or when the base of the part is in water.
Now I’ve got the idea of a bad Tolkien/Romero crossover: Night of the Living Dead Ents.
Contrary to popular belief, buds form in fall, not in the spring.
And if you stuck them in the ground they would grow.
You’d only have to worry if they were zombie ents. As it is this is only mildly terrifying.
Still pretty terrifying.
They waited all winter to tell you, John.
“This bud’s for you!”
What happens when Zombie Tree meets Kudzu?
I guess you could smite it with holy fire…. If your fire resistance is high enough.
little do you know about dead.
severed from their original tree?
but I do feel yet another short story coming on
what we REALLY needed here was a back channel way to reach your daughter.
so that she could slowly start moving the branches closer to the tree that they were cut from.
/cue very slow, low zombie moan
“Sa-a-a-a-a-a-p! Sa-a-a-a-a-a-a-ap! We need sa-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-p!”
That is SO COOL.
That’s all I’ve got. Seriously. SO COOL.
You fools. Robin Hobb warned you all in her Soldier’s Son trilogy, but would you listen? No.
You could probably root those if you had an interest in doing so.
@9 – I can hear the theme music now – a little Mancini – “dead Ent, dead Ent, dead Ent dead Ent dead Ent dead Ent dead ENT! de-e-e-ead Ent.”
Tom Smith has a song for that – unfortunately I can only find the lyrics: http://www.tomsmithonline.com/lyrics/undead_happy_trees.htm
Stick ’em in pots full of soil, let them root and then sell them on, small money making opportunity.
Seriously, willows will easily root on from even long severed branches. In this case the branches were all safely shut down for the winter, full of the stuff that primes the rest of the tree in spring before they got cut off.
Zombie trees go looking for GRAAAAIINS!
meh, I gots nuthin’
Oh, I don’t know. I thought it was pretty good.
@ #9 – for some reason, I LOLed. That would be an awesome movie.
Now, all we need is someone to make the fake trailer and put it on Reddit.
Quit using Stephen King’s bag of tricks to avoid housework – you still have to clean the yard.
That branch is not dead which can eternal lie.
And with strange seasons, even death may bloom!
You serious sciency people going on about “buds form in the fall” are ruining the fun.
Or would that be Orpheus’ Revenge?
Have to think about that one…
PS Y’all are twisted. I like that. But then you read Scalzi. Or – in John’s case – write Scalzi.
When the woodpile is full, the trees will return to earth to FEED ON THE LIVING.
I once got a load of catalpa wood for the firewood pile and found, come spring, that the pieces in contact with the soil had set roots. It is not good firewood but it is a determined wood.
Lay on, Macmillan, lay on!
* * *
Know you not that Scalzi cannot be killed by any fan of woman born? Nor that his reign shall not end until the dead trees of Birnham Wood arise and walk outside his castle?
This message brought to you by Birnham Wood LLP, a law partnership between corporations, and delivered to you in triplicate
Trees are fascinating: the creatures and things that grow on them, in them, under them, from their bones, make them a home or a vine-victim ripe for strangling… it never stops until every bit of the tree is gone. Each one is an ecosystem. They can also be quite freaky at times, . (warning for icky picture)
If you put it in water you can….grow a new tree. Isn’t nature neat!
“Know you not that Scalzi cannot be killed by any fan of woman born? Nor that his reign shall not end until the dead trees of Birnham Wood arise and walk outside his castle?”
Oh good, I was HOPING there would be Zombie Macbeth comments.