TG3005 : Bedeguar galls

taken 1 year ago, near to Surlingham, Norfolk, Great Britain

Bedeguar galls
Bedeguar galls
This gall is perhaps more commonly known as Robin's pincushion. It is caused by the common and widespread gall wasp Diplolepis rosae and houses a number of larvae, each in a chamber of their own. The gall can be found on the stems of wild roses where it matures in autumn. The grubs it contains feed on the host plant throughout the winter and emerge as adults in spring. The adults reproduce asexually and only a very small number are male.
Plant galls
Galls are abnormal growths, swellings, pustules or discolourations produced by a plant or other host under the influence of another organism, involving the enlargement and/or proliferation of host cells and the provision of both shelter and food or nutrients for the invading organism. Galls provide a home for the larvae or grubs of certain invertebrates, where they can feed and develop, and each type of gall-producer or causer is specific to a particular kind of plant. Galls come in many shapes including spheres, knobs, lumps, warts or blisters, each being characteristic of the causal organism, and can have a range of colours. Galls can be found on the stems, leaves, flowers, fruits, seeds and roots of plants. Although many varieties of plants can be affected, oaks and willows are particularly rich in galls. Oaks are said to be host to more than 500 different types of galls. Weather, plant susceptibility, and pest populations affect the occurrence of plant galls.

Certain galls are documented to have been used in the production of ink since at least the time of the Roman Empire, and iron gall ink was the main medium used for writing in the Western World from the Middle Ages to the early 20th century. Oak marble galls > LinkExternal link for instance, were introduced in the early 19th century in an attempt to grow our own supply of galls for making ink. In Chinese medicine, oak galls are used as a remedy called moshizi, which is used for treating dysentery, ulcers and hemorrhoids among other things. Native Americans used poultices of ground gall nuts on sores, cuts and burns. The high content of tannic acid also makes oak galls a good source for tanning and dyeing.

Galls cause little permanent injury and rarely kill the infested plant.

For more detailed information go to the British Plant Gall Society's website at LinkExternal link
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TG3005, 305 images   (more nearby )
Photographer
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Date Taken
Wednesday, 23 August, 2017   (more nearby)
Submitted
Wednesday, 23 August, 2017
Geographical Context
Wild Animals, Plants and Mushrooms 
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TG 3095 0554 [10m precision]
WGS84: 52:35.9122N 1:24.5277E
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TG 3095 0556
View Direction
SOUTH (about 180 degrees)
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