Sunday, December 31, 2006

Water Caught by Eastern Red Cedar

Click on this photo to see a larger version.

It is interesting to see water held in trees after a rain. There are creeks where I live that overflow their banks because of housing development. Years ago, when the land was covered by forest, the creek carried much less water.

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Deer Sign

Here is a sappling with the bark rubbed off. My guess is by deer.

Friday, December 29, 2006


I took this photo of a lichen on tree bark. I think its lichen. I am not sure on ID.
The lichen is about 1" long. Blown up.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Chambered Pith of a Black Walnut

Here is a chambered pith of a Black Walnut twig.

The Pith is the very center of the twig. The pith stores food and the rey from the pith conducts water, minerals and food radially.

Black walnut bud.

Monday, December 25, 2006

American Sycamore

Here is a photo showing how the fruit balls stay on in the winter. Click on the photo for a larger view.

Here is a close up of the Am. Sycamore tree bark.

These trees rot fast after a branch dies. Notice the center of this tree has a cavity where a branch had died. So these trees provide good habitat for wildlife.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Monday, December 11, 2006

Osage Orange Update

Here is an update of the Osage orange tree in December.

The photos below were taken October 30th.

Multi stemed Osage orange

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Northern Red Oak Contrasted with Chinquapin Oak

Chinquapin oak has lighter bark than Northern red oak

The acorn cap on the left is the N red oak and the Chinquapin acorn cap is on the right.

The bole on the left is the Nothern Red oak and the one on the right is the Chinquapin oak.

Black Locust Thorns

Friday, December 08, 2006

Lombardy poplar

I came across a Lonbardy poplar Populus nigra var. italica Here are 3 photos.

This tree can be IDed by the acending crown and the bulging sides of the leaves. Also the buds are not flat against the twig. The tree is used for wind breaks.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Black Walnut

Here is the bark of Black walnut. Notice the bark forms a dimond pattern.

The buds are fuzzy.

Snow in the Woods

I have to snowplow so it is hard to get good photos after a snow. Here are a couple. I was amazed that the trail I walked on had no footprints on it. Only dogs deer turkey and rabbits.

The photo of the large tree is a Chinkapin oak at a park off of Blue Ridge Blvd. The photo of the hillside (taken 6 days after the snow storm) still had snow on it from the Thursday storm. That hillside faced north. The hillside on the north side of the creek would face south and would get more direct sun had no snow.

As always you can click the photo for an enlargement.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Shingle Oak bud and White Ash Bud

Here is a photo of Shingle oak leader bud. Notice that they are grouped at the tip. This is typical of oaks.

Here are some photos of White Ash. Notice the year end color change.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Tentrils of Greenbriar

Here is a photo of tentrils of Bristle greenbriar. Though this might not be Bristle but Hellfeter greenbriar, because it wasn't bristly in the upper part of the vine.

Angled stem of Eastern Cottonwood

Eastern cottonwood has interesting ribbed (angled) stems. I saw
these trees growing in a flat area by power lines. This area
had to be scarified to install the power lines. The buds are
red and lay flat against the stem.

The stems have grown tall in just a few years. Cottonwood is one of the fastest growing trees

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Bristly Greenbrier

Photo of Bristly greenbrier (Smilax hispida)
It climbs up other plants by tendrils. A tendril is a filifom spiral shoot that winds around anther body.

This plant does not have ornamental value but could be used as a break. You don't want to touch it without gloves.

Looking on the internet I could not find a photo of it in the wild. There is a lot of it in Missouri.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Tree Lesson

Trees are the largest plant, live a long time, have one main trunk, massive root system and extend their branches over a broad area. Trees grow in most areas except in the extreme cold or dry climate. Usually trees will grow higher than 20’.

Roots of trees are the part of the tree that grows in the dirt. They provide support, gather water and nutrients.

Tree trunk, (bole, stem) is the part of the tree supported by the roots. The trunk supports the branches.

The tree branches are supported by the trunk. the branches support the twigs which support the leaves.

Ginkgo leaf

Ginkgo leaf

Thanksgiving ride

I rode my bicycle to this pond to watch early Thanksgiving morning. I spooked up some ducks when I arrived.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Box elder maple

Box elder bud and twig.

Notice that Box elder maple has green twigs.

Here is the bark of Box elder

Here is a Box elder maple twig.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Shagbark hickory bud

Here is a Shagbark hickory bud. the loose scales are easy to spot.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Pin Oak

The Pin oak leaf has narrow lobes.

Here you can see that Pin oaks have smooth bark.

They are planted a lot as ornamentals.

Monday, November 13, 2006


I was watching a field of crows eating at Blue Valley park. Guard crows were in the trees circling the group. Most would continue walking across the grass searching for food. A few would fly over to the trees to the east. Then a few would fly back to the grass to eat.

There were more than 1000 of them.

When they were flying over to the trees they would have the tips of their wings pointed up. When they would land going west the tips were aligned with the wing.

This would go on for about 10 minutes. When I had pulled up with my truck and stopped. The crows gave me space but weren’t bothered.

Then all of a sudden all the crows were flying except 1 section of them. And it wasn’t 10 seconds before that group were on the move also.

I thought someone must be walking across the park or a couple of stray dogs were coming this way. Then I saw a red tailed hawk land in a tree to the north. The red tail shown in the sunlight.

All the crows are gone and 1 Red tailed hawk was sitting in the tree. Later another Red tailed hawk flew over and both of them flew off together.

Some of the crows might of gone to the Blue river bottoms to the east. A few crows
moved back into the trees to my east. But moved away quickly.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

White Oak 234 Points

Here is a White oak tree.
I measured the circumference at141".
Height at 75'
Canopy at 73'
Total points = 234

This tree is in Hidden valley park. On the southeast side at a motorcycle rally area.

It will be interesting if I can find this tree and others I have been measuring in the summer. The photo would look completely different.

Bur Oak 241 Points

My wife (Jill)and I went hiking Saturday and we say this big Bur oak. I went back and measured it Sunday morning.
Circumference = 156"
Height = 63 '
Canopy = 88'
Total points = 241

Saturday, November 11, 2006

White Oak leaves on ground

One can sometimes tell the type of tree nearby according to the preponderance of leaves on the ground.

White oak is distinct from other oaks by the narrow smooth lobes. The bark also has more of a whitish color to it.

The tree attains to a dominate position in the forest. Meaning it will be taller and thicker than the other trees in the forest around it.

Thursday, November 09, 2006