Thursday, July 24, 2014

Shingle Oak

Went to see a Shingle Oak I measured in Oct 2010. Looking at the growth in 3 full growing seasons. A tree of this size doesn't have to grow much to increase volume by a lot.

Looking at the bark there are marks showing where there has been branches before. And the top had been broken off because the branches were too mature for new growth. The 80 to 100 foot level of tree around here seems to be the top. Wind will break off tops growing higher. But is that the limiting factor in height growth for this part of the country?

There is always a respect for a tree that is healthy and has grown to be a dominate tree in the area. It is a Shingle oak and these trees are not dominate but they are common.

The tree seems to signal a change from woods to open field. This is a city park so the woods had been cleared out long ago when the park was created. What the park is is a green way that probably has a sewer line running along here. And the opening of this park allows access for pipe maintenance. This activity allows enjoyment of nature for me.

I am sitting currently in a dead end to the grass cutting that has a shelter of trees between the park and housing. A handy way for me to sit down and enjoy a a quite few minutes as I write this up.

It has rained the past 2 days and there is humidity in the air but the temp is under 80 so there is not much discomfort. Life is good in the woods and I enjoy each time I come here. Measuring trees is a way for me to get in the woods.

Right now there are clouds going over and the darkness speaks of rain possibly if the clouds get more uniform.

Yesterday we were walking along the Missouri and we could see rain clouds off in the distance with showers coming down at different spaces in the distance.

We decided to return to the car to miss the rain. I had left my camera in the car just in case I got caught in the rain. There was no use risking my camera for the opportunity of taking a good photo on a cloudy day was not excellent.

Anyway the Shingle oak is the sentinel of the park. Guarding or signifying a change in topography. And cover type. The tree does not have competition for height growth and there is room for branches to spread out across the sides but not enough for advancing branch growth.

Does tight bark give a signal of health growth. IE the growth is fast enough that the fissures of the bark don't have time to thicken?

There is a cottonwood tree to the south which is encroaching on the tree canopy. Notice in the photo how the tree is putting effort into growing more to the north to get away from the Cottonwood tree.

Measuring the diameter of the tree I cut away a poison ivy vine growing up the bole of the tree that would have effected the circumference. This as well will help the health of the tree in the future. Though it might be many years before the vine would have gotten big enough to choke the tree.

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