The Walking Dead and the Osage Orange Tree


Mary Niehaus RallesI’m a big fan of The Walking Dead. For those of you not familiar with the TV show, there is a small band of people who are tenacious and relentless in teaming up to survive in a world where a disease has caused the world to be overrun with "walkers," or zombies.

I’m the first one to admit that there is a very low likelihood we’ll have to plan or prepare for this scenario. But if you just consider the backdrop of a world where anyone who wants to survive must do so by learning how to live sustainably, now I think we have a peaked interest. I already know who I would hand-pick as fellow survivors I’d want in my corner if homesteading, hunting, and gardening suddenly became a necessity to survival. And, in thinking about how to be self sufficient, live off the land, and build community around a common goal, the show becomes more relevant to some of the basic staples in life we are seeking to achieve here.

In a world where homesteading and gardening for food sources might suddenly be mandatory, I would want to know I had the tenacious and resourceful community here within GRIT in my corner. The GRIT community is a powerful network of skilled craftsmen and women — talented individuals carrying forward the know-how to continue to enjoy living self-sufficiently and in a sustainable way.

So, when I was talking to a friend the other day and joking about fruits I called “brains” as a kid — my mind always goes to zombies (hence my Walking Dead intro) — I was laughing about my early impression of the Osage Orange Tree.

The Osage Orange or hedge apple
Photo by Fotolia/ctvvelve

I remember this tree as simply being the one that dropped green brains in the street that sometimes were squished by passing cars. I'm an Ohio native, where the tree was introduced during the 1800s, so they are pretty common around here.

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