The acorn, or oak nut, is the nut of the oaks and their close relatives. It usually contains a single seed (occasionally two seeds), enclosed in a tough, leathery shell, and borne in a cup-shaped cupule. Acorns vary from 1–6 cm long and 0.8–4 cm broad. Acorns take between 6 and 24 months (depending on the species) to mature. Historically, I have always gauged how severe of a winter we were in for by how many acorns fell to our lawn in the late fall. Some years I would have to rake them up into large piles and other years, there were almost none. Typically, the more acorns in the fall meant that we were in for a severe winter. That all changed last year when we had almost no acorns and we had the snowiest winter on record with over 10′ of snow in basically the month of February. Oh well, small crop this year also, what ever that means.