This month, we are pleased to open to the public an exhibit crafted by a partnership between the Little Compton Garden Club and the Garden Club of Buzzards Bay! This exhibit details the intertwined nature of ourselves and our native oaks, with a focus on the biology, bounty, and beliefs around these beautiful plants.

Under the Oak Canopy

A children’s scale area with chairs and tables for table and card games–all crafted from native oak–is an enjoyable element for families. There are oak-related books and activities available. The exhibit also features a dazzling array of cuttings, galls, burls crafted into tools and ornamentation, and more. Photos, articles, and infographics are accompanied by a documentary that examines the oak within the context of the New England forest.

An Abundance of Information

Zooming out to examine oak’s crucial role in the life system of the forest, you can see the links between mammals and birds down to insects and bacteria. Oaks support over 500 species of caterpillars, which are fed on by birds, who migrate to these trees for a food supply and to create a family in.

Local Arborist Kicks Off Opening

Eric Whipple spoke from his years of experience on the importance of native oaks, exhorting his listeners to collaborate with the oaks and create healthy ecosystems. Although no other species supports as much life as our oaks, it was clear by the end of Eric’s talk that these trees have also provided plentiful resources, from their harvesting as lumber for the king’s ships in colonial times, to being a precious resource for beautiful furnishings and carpentry.

Exhibit Available To All At Learning Center

The “Why Are Oaks Special?” exhibit will be housed in our Learning Center at Westport Woods until March.

The Learning Center is typically open to visitors from 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. We hope to see you among the oaks!