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Wild Cherry Gall Blog

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Blog entry by VanDesignWoodworkin posted 05-19-2022 11:06 AM 623 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Since I’ve been posting some wild cherry gall bowls, people have been asking to see what the galls look like in the wild. Yesterday I went fly fishing and, since the first time in a long time I was skunked on the fishing (a few strikes but not one landed fish) I’m glad that some decent pictures came out of the trip.

Here’s what I know. Wild cherry galls are caused by a disease called Black Knot Fungus. The fungus affects ornamental and fruiting trees (so if one has a an orchard, it can be really bad). Once fungus is established on a tree, each spring the gall spores and then spreads the fungus to nearby trees. For the accidental orchards out in the woods, this means if you find one gall, you only need to look around and you’ll spot more.

Not all galls are useful to bowl making. They have to be the right shape and size. I like a gall that has circled all the way around a branch or trunk. I find lots of galls, but I’m pretty selective in what I take. I only take if the tree is dead or dying. Once a gall wraps all the way around a trunk, it’s often fatal for the tree.

Here’s a gall I spotted high in a wild cherry tree:

Good looking gall, but I wasn’t about to cut down a tree that big and obviously doing ok.

I did take three galls that have potential. One was quite large, and I look forward to making a bigger bowl from it. I just need to let these galls season for a bit because making any kind of “green” projects from them guarantees nasty cracks and splits since the galls are quite wet inside.

It was nice that I collected these so early in the spring because they weren’t yet covered in the disgusting sap from which the spores are spread.

Here are some other pics:

-- "What do you mean, 'Give me some wild cherry gall?' What do you think, this stuff grows on trees or something?"



4 comments so far

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pottz

26520 posts in 2474 days


#1 posted 05-19-2022 02:34 PM

thanks van nice to see the origin of those beautiful bowls.

-- working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

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VanDesignWoodworkin

1074 posts in 289 days


#2 posted 05-19-2022 02:36 PM

Glad you got to see them… just wish I also had some pictures of fish!


thanks van nice to see the origin of those beautiful bowls.

- pottz


-- "What do you mean, 'Give me some wild cherry gall?' What do you think, this stuff grows on trees or something?"

View pottz's profile (online now)

pottz

26520 posts in 2474 days


#3 posted 05-19-2022 02:51 PM



Glad you got to see them… just wish I also had some pictures of fish!

thanks van nice to see the origin of those beautiful bowls.

- pottz

- VanDesignWoodworkin


me too,i used to fly fish a lot,all over alaska and canada.havn’t done any in the last 20 years though.me my dad his best friend and another guy would do a trip every year but after my dad and his friend passed that kinda killed it for me.someday id like to get back to it.

-- working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

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Brodan

503 posts in 2792 days


#4 posted 05-20-2022 12:37 AM

Thanks van. I now know your source of those beautiful burls.

-- Dan, TN

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