The story of the Miracle Oak of Iisalmi

Pekka Huttunen, a pilot from Iisalmi, worked in Iisalmi on the lumber ship Kärkkäinen & Huttunen, which took timber to St Petersburg in the early 1900s. On one of his journeys he brought back acorns, which grew into several trees for the garden of the Huttunen home. By
the 1950s, the oaks had grown so large that one of the three had to be felled. The wood was used to make an oak table.

The two large oaks that remained proved to be very durable. The city of Iisalmi replanted the oak saplings about thirty years ago. The Tuulimäki Garden, which collects and propagates hardy northern plant species, started propagating Iisalmi’s oak miracle oak in the 1990s and the seedlings have spread throughout northern Finland.

The oaks have proven to be very hardy even though their natural range is 400 kilometres further south.

Oak – the tree of the thunder god

The oak grows a very deep root system and has been considered a sacred tree, for example in Estonia where it is known as the thunder god tree. The tree grows to its full size in less than 80 years, after which it slows down and grows thicker at the front. The Karelian oak
remains in excellent condition even at 100 years of age, and its hardy offspring are expected to delight squirrels and humans alike for hundreds of years to come.

Sign up for the oak project

The Northern Sun will be distributing Iisalmi Wonder Pond bouncers to enthusiasts on a pre-order basis. We will send out 20 terrarium packages to subscribers in the autumn and provide guidance on breeding. We will collect information about their success. The price of
the basic package is 25 euros including postage. Larger shipments are possible.

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