About the time we realized we might have missed the first turn to the lake, Ragna spotted this tree.
Yes, I brake for Madrone trees.
Ragna remembers "about 20 years ago when the new Hwy 16 was being built an amazing number of Madrone trees, maybe 10 or so, were exposed when the brush and trees were cleared for the new road."
This appears to be the only one remaining on this stretch of road. The Madrone tree grows only in limited pockets of the Texas Hill Country and West Texas. It also grows in northern Mexico, New Mexico, and California.
This must be one of the taller Madrone trees in this area. The Madrone is typically a small tree, but this one is very large. My guess is well over 20 ft, possibly closer to 25 ft, and according to the Madrone description on the Bear Springs Blossom nature preserve website it takes about 100 years for a Madrone to grow to that height.
Peeling bark is normal and attractive, and sheds as the trunk expands
The resulting smooth trunk is a beautiful mix of peach, tan, terracotta mottling.
The branches have a distinctive wavy pattern and are quite striking against the sky.
Beautiful shadow patterns across the trunks
The blooms appeared to be just past peak, it will produce red fruit in the fall.
The west (or left) side of the tree has died, possibly due to the recent drought. The east side looks to be in good shape.
While these trees are rare out in the open like this one, there are other Madrone trees in parks and preserves around the Bandera area.
To the drivers who pass this way daily, a rarer sight might be two ladies on the side of the road inspecting this special tree.
Interesting! I don't think I've ever seen this type of tree before.ReplyDelete
Yes, pretty rare "in the wild" although you can see them "in captivity" at preserves and public gardens.Delete
They are spectacular.ReplyDelete
It was definitely beautiful to see.Delete
I would have stopped too! What a gorgeous tree! While at the LBWC a couple of weeks ago, I spent quite a while photographing the madrone tree there. The bark is so captivating. Glad you were able to experience this awesome tree up close and personal.ReplyDelete
I'll have to look for that. I haven't been there for a while, but they are opening a new garden soon.Delete
The Madrone is one of my favorite trees around here in Southern Arizona. Beautiful tree that is important to our wildlife.ReplyDelete
Oh my, I left out AZ because the info didn't include it. Good that you left this note here.Delete
That is a beautiful tree. I don't think I've ever seen one 'in the wild'.ReplyDelete
Glad you missed the turn, so you could share with us.
Part of the fun is sharing.Delete
OOOOH! I love that bark! Very Pretty! What an amazing find! This tree is truly the older statesman at the century mark. How wonderful!ReplyDelete
It was both fun and amazing to see such a large one up close.Delete