Product: Oak Bark
Latin Name: Quercus robur syn, Quercus pedunculata, Quercus longaeva.
Plant Family: Fagaceae
Other Names: Tanner's Bark, Common Oak, English Oak, Pedunculate Oak, French Oak, Royal Oak, White Oak, Duir, Quercus, Jove’s Nuts & Acorn Tree.
Description: The oak is a long-lived deciduous tree native to Europe that can reach a height of 45 metres. The leaves are 7-14cm in length, deeply lobed with short stalks and serrated edges; they are mid green in colour on the upper surface and paler green on the underside. The flowers comprise of small cylindrical clusters of ‘catkins’ the fruit is known as acorn, it is brown and ovate in shape with a cup-like base.
Brief History: The botanical name for the Oak is said to be derived from the Celtic word ‘quer’ meaning fine and ‘cuez’ meaning tree. One of the oaks common names ‘Royal Oak’ is said to have been attributed to it when King Charles II hid in an oak tree after an unsuccessful attempt to take the throne of England after his father’s execution in 1649. The bark of the tree has high tannin content and was used as a tanning agent for leather. Dioscorides in the 1st century A.D. recommended oak bark for treating stomach problems such as spitting blood, Culpeper also recommended the bark ‘to stay the spitting of the blood, and the flux’.
SUGGESTED USEThe bark can be used to make various shades or black, brown and even purple dyes dependant on the mordant used. It can also be added to compost piles as a fast activator. Acorns from the oak are ground and used to make flour and also roasted to make a coffee substitute. The leaves can be composted and used as leaf mulch which is purported to repel slugs and snails.
Shelf life of two years provided that goods are stored in an airtight container in ambient conditions.
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