Many gardeners are just frustrated over all the acorns this year. Evidentially they clean off their walkways to find just as many the next day. Some gardeners are threatening to take down their trees saying they have never noticed this before.
I am a bit in sympathy as many nights I can sit on our patio listening to the acorns dropping on my neighbor's roof. I would guess that sound inside the home could drive you to do desperate actions - like removing the tree or at least a few of the limbs. But the question still remains -- why all the acorns?
Maybe it's to feed the squirrels. Come to think of it, they do look a bit fatter this year and their tails appear a bit fuller this fall too. Certainly they should be able to stuff enough of the fruit of the oaks away so not to have to feast on my tomatoes, corn or elm trees. But I bet they won't.
Most likely the reason for all the acorns is the oaks have had several prior years of good growth. They had all the water they needed plus the fertilizer you have been providing the lawn and nearby plantings. This allowed them to store up enough energy to produce another great crop. And just for the record we have had heavy acorn crops in the past.
New oaks start frequent acorn production after 20 years of growth. Depending on the seasonal growth this can continue until they are about 80 years of age. So get ready for many years of acorn drop. By the way - this has been a good year of growth for the oaks so expect more acorns next year.
I certainly hope not even a small percentage of acorns that fall to the ground sprout. I already pull the seedlings out of flower beds, shrub plantings and container gardens after light acorn years. If even a few of the acorns squirrels are stuffing away in the ground germinate - get ready for the oak tree invasion.