All year long the Sweet Gum trees drop these horrible, spiny, rolly polly, itchy balls. They never seem to stop, but they are worse in the spring and fall. We don’t have any on our property, but everyone else does, so we might as well. They litter the roads, the driveways, and the gardens.
Everywhere, and I mean everywhere you walk or look are these icky brown balls. The dogs jump when they step on them and Mom has fallen flat on the ground by stepping on one.
The Sweet Gum is anything but! I really don’t know any human that eats the spiny fruit but I hear that it is sour. And even after the seeds disperse the little brown balls just keep their shape and hang on the tree throughout the winter months.
A positive side of this tree is the beautiful color it gives us in the fall and the fact that the goldfinches, purple finches, squirrels, and chipmunks eat the seeds. I understand that it is the most important hardwood in the southeastern United States (where we live), but that doesn’t mean we like them. No, not at all.
Louise says OUCH!
Do you have a tree or bush you hate where you live? What is it?