gall found beneath an oak tree

Asked August 25, 2019, 2:14 PM EDT

I saw this question - https://ask.extension.org/questions/591750
I was awaiting the response, since I have seen these "spheres" below my oak tree as well.
Could they possibly be a gall that turns into a "smoke puff"?
I'll watch for more beneath my oak tree.

Chisago County Minnesota

1 Response

Hello. I'm glad you've turned to AaEx.

You've been a great help. Thank you. As a result of your question, I went looking for galls of oaks and found the information. I answered the other guy but here is my answer for you to read:

The gall-forming insect lays its eggs within the plant tissue of the host plant. Fluid deposited with the egg causes plant cells to begin multiplying differently than they would otherwise. After hatching, the tiny larvae feed on the plant tissue and create a home surrounded by live plant tissue. The developing larva continues to produce plant growth compounds that maintain and control host plant cell division. The larva matures, pupates within the gall, then chews its way out of the gall when mature.

Most galls do not cause severe damage to the tree so control measures are usually not needed. Here is more information about galls in general from the U of MN Extension: https://extension.umn.edu/yard-and-garden-insects/insect-and-mite-galls#cynipid-gall-wasps-1346960

I hope this information helps and thank you for your help.