When Trees Go Nuts

Published on May 10, 2018
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Every once in a while, all the oaks or spruces or other plants in a region suddenly produce a tremendous bounty of seeds - up to 100 times more than usual. But why do they do it, and how do they all manage to sync up?
To learn more about mast seeding, start your googling with these keywords:
Mast Year: A year in which all the plants of a particular species in a region ramp up their seed production.
Predator Satiation Hypothesis: The hypothesis that mast seeding is a strategy plants use for controlling the population of squirrels and other seed-eating animals.

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Credits (and Twitter handles):
Script Writer: Emily Elert (@eelert)
Script Editor: Alex Reich (@alexhreich)
Video Illustrator: Ever Salazar (@eversalazar)
Video Director: Alex Reich (@alexhreich)
Video Narrator: Emily Elert (@eelert)
With Contributions From: Henry Reich, Kate Yoshida, Peter Reich, David Goldenberg
Music by: Nathaniel Schroeder: www.soundcloud.com/drschroeder
Fletcher, Quinn E., Stan Boutin, Jeffrey E. Lane, Jalene M. LaMontagne, Andrew G. McAdam, Charles J. Krebs, and Murray M. Humphries. 2010. “The Functional Response of a Hoarding Seed Predator to Mast Seeding.” Ecology 91 (9): 2673-83.
Kelly, Dave, and Victoria L. Sork. 2002. “Mast Seeding in Perennial Plants: Why, How, Where?” Annual Review of Ecology and Systematics 33 (1). Annual Reviews: 427-47.
Kelly, D. 1994. “The Evolutionary Ecology of Mast Seeding.” Trends in Ecology & Evolution 9 (12): 465-70.
LaMontagne, J. 2018. Personal Communication.


  • If you find our videos intreeguing, please support us through Patreeon! www.patreon.com/minuteearth Or, click the "Sponsor" button to support us through US-tv itself. Affectionutly yours, MiNutEarth

    • MinuteEarth I love you

    • Seriously. This comment needs more likes.

    • MinuteEarth I THINK ALL OF UR VIDS R AWSOME!!!!

    • MinuteEarth can you do a video about Hippopotamuses please?

    • you make 3 videos a month that are 2 mins long and 1 min begging for money at the end of the video, why do you employ 8 people for 6 mins of TOTAL video a month?

  • it'd so fun learning with you keep going your amazing

  • *tree sex extravaganza*

  • Watch Scishow's video "The Earth's Internet: How Fungi Help Plants Communicate" to learn that maybe trees can actually talk to each other miles away.

  • Hea?

  • My little sister is born on December 2, 2010 but I’m born on March 10, 2008

  • Admiring what you guys bring to the channels. This is my favourite channel. Very good for kids and parents to learn science attractively

  • 0:36 is that the Kanto region

  • that joke was kind of *nutty*

  • Nutty

  • So the trees literally went nuts?

  • When trees go nuts, squirrels go nuts, when squirrels go nuts, dogs go nuts, when dogs go nuts, cats go nuts, and when that happens, it's funny to watch.

  • If you're willing to teach me about trees so eagerly, I guess we could be _Happy Tree Friends_

  • i thought this said "when trees go nut"

  • I read the title as "when trees nut" ...

  • I read the title as "when trees nut" ...

  • please no.

  • Spieces and faeces, what 2 thinks that are so diffrent 💩💩

  • Had to come watch this again because I'm pretty sure this is a masting year for the oak tree next to my house. We're being bombarded more than usual.

  • Trees can have sex?!

  • 2010 was when I was born

  • Nature finds a way.

  • Pun

  • she said : if you like learning about tree sex or other wierd things XD

  • do you promote being vegan?

  • Wow.. that really explains a lot.

  • (Pun intended)

  • I had low volume and when you said “This video was made by you” I thought you said glue

  • That was when i was born

  • Ur drawing tree sex m8

  • *ThIs ViDeO wAs MaDe bY yOu*

  • they bust a nut

  • What happened when the end of the world 🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔

  • Maybe not grown on trees but its made from trees.

  • 2:18 wow i'm hilarious

  • T R E E S E X

  • Trees are more sophisticated than one may think. They may develop a sophisticated network of root systems to 'share' nutrients, and the way they coordinate pesticide production, balance, respond to weather, etc. is amazing

  • wow, acornt believe my eyes

  • you know what i was born in 2010 cool huh

  • Coolcoolcoolcoolcoolcoolcoolcool

  • Oh cool

  • wooow

  • Sooo... a forrest fuck fest?

  • dem trees smarter than me

  • WhyTrees Go Nutz

  • Tree sex lol X3.


  • I was born on April 2010!

    • Dorothy Isidro Wow, I was in 4th grade in 2010. Have fun kid, childhood dosen't last long.

  • 2018?

  • Subscribe to me coz this vid was sponsored by *ME*

  • Never knew trees were so smart.

  • it becomes doodoo

  • Thanks for the interesting video. I wondered if they reduced yield the 1-2 previous seasons. This would reduce the squirrel population while allowing the trees to save energy or allocating energy to roots and canopy to harvest energy better next year. Trees do track time, and synchronize flowering. Apple trees produce ever other year.

  • MAST(urbat)ING

  • Now I feel bad for eating plant babies

  • 0:01 _Was Brought To You By You_

  • I love that thumbnail

  • A Dad joke? Wait, a MOM joke?

  • I read "When trees grow nuts" And i thought it was "that" nuts...

  • Poop

  • Like the rhyme

  • In Jamaica, there's no trees nuts

  • let them save the world

  • I was born in 2010

  • Actually there is evidence that points to that they can communicate with each other.

  • Trees should make no nuts the year before masting.

  • im actually from finland

  • i was born on the year after 2010 that is 2011

  • Sperm is what you swallow while dating that mintephysics dude. And the stuff trees spread is called pollen

  • This made me nut

  • why do we have so much water

  • That tree got aborted

  • If mushrooms can communicate with trees then they can communicate with each other to send a trees 🌳 message to a another 🌲

  • Aaaaaa

  • 2:16 Quizzer: Is that a pregnant squirrel, or did it just eat lots of nuts? Contestant: *ACORNS!!* Quizzer: Nuts still work, though. Contestant: Oh. Is it... pregnant? Quizzer: Nope! It just ate lots of nuts. Contestant (thinking): *darn, now I'm out of the game >:-(*

  • I was born in 2010

  • Go to minute earth #www.minuteearth.com

  • Go to m

  • So I'm allergic to tree sperm 😕😕😕😕😕😕😕😕😕😕

  • Wait... trees go nuts lol

  • It's because they're TREEting each other

  • so it was a massive tree orgy? damn, those naughty trees, they need jesus.

  • Yay

  • Are they friable? If so I can make em go extinct in the first day.....FRYED ACORNS

  • Can we change the name of masting into nutting ?

  • That’s nuts

  • too much cuteness in one animation

  • But wait.. first you told us that plants communicate by their roots

  • 🐾🐾🐾🐾🐾 🌲🌲🌲🌲🌲🌲🌲🌲🌲🌲 🌰🌰🌰🌰🌰🌰🌰🌰🌰🌰🌰🌰🥜🥜🥜🥜🥜🥜🥜🥜🥜🥜🥜🥜

  • When you say they cannot talk, it's not to say that they don't communicate. They found large regions of trees in the northwest of United States communicating via a mycelium Network.

  • MinuteEarth Delivering Puns Since ????


  • I thought it was gonna be a joke video.

  • Yay

  • *_-N U T-_*

  • This should be fairly easy to prove

  • Bitch stop saying tree sex....please😑

  • So trees have a concience?

  • Wait....arent trees female and male at the same time?🤔

  • nice animation