Currently is the time when the acorns of the English oak (Quercus robur) fall. Cheerfully they are collected here.
The English oak is kinderleit to identify. The acorns hang (sometimes in multiples) on a long stalk. The leaves of the English oak sit close to the branch. The acorns are germinable only for a short time (about 6 months). The English Oak is also called “German Oak” or “English Oak”.
English oak can grow up to 40 meters high and live 1000 years. Individual trees were even up to 1400 years old.
Only from an age of about 60 years (!) it is able to develop germinable acorns.
Quercus robur is considered to be very storm resistant. Their taproots can also tap very strong compacted roots.
The English oak is found throughout Central Europe, including parts of Scandinavia, Italy, Greece and Portugal. Nevertheless, the English oak is sometimes considered “problematic” in terms of climate warming (low tolerance to drought stress), see this link . However, this is not a unanimous opinion. There are even various positions that the English oak can be called the winner of climate warming in the medium term.
English oak is considered very frost resistant and grows even in waterlogged areas. It provides food and habitat for many species of insects and their larvae, and provides pollen for bees in May. The fruits are an important food source for many species of birds and mammals. For example, the jay or squirrel spreads the pedunculate oak by creating food depots.
Quercus robur as food
After treatment (sponging) of the bitter substances, the acorns can be processed into “flour”. For this purpose it is necessary to soak the acorns in water for several days and to change it again and again. After about 4-5 water retention (2-3 days each), the acorns can be processed into flour. They contain a high proportion of starch (at 40%). However, the flour should be combined with classic flour variations (for example, with wheat flour).
It is known that even Stone Age people collected and stored acorns on a large scale – this often ensured survival in winter.
Tannins and tannin make digestion difficult, yet the acorns of the English oak served in famines and during war years due to their starch, oil, sugar and protein.
as food, by “stretching” cereal flour with acorn flour. In Russia during World War 1, acorn flour was used to bake an officially tested “hunger bread”.