WE’VE WRITTEN about those weird brain-coral-looking Osage oranges, also known as hedge apples, that are the fruit of the Maclura pomifera tree. Wiki calls it a “small deciduous tree,” but the examples dotted around the Washington, D.C., area soar way, way up. As large as the slightly citrus-smelling fruit are, you can barely see them all the way up in that greenery. You usually notice them only when they’ve already fallen to the ground, ready to be scooped up and used as a decorative item (they’re not edible, not even by most animals).
The difference this year is that they started dropping in August, weeks early. So a word to the decoratively inspired: Now is not too soon to start collecting them.