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Trees in Our Woods

Counting tree species in our little woods.

Posted: Nov 26, 2015 11:03 am

In a documentary I saw recently, the narrator said there were on average, 25 tree species per acre in Britain; so I wondered how many tree species there are on our acre. I found I can name about 25 tree species here, but only if I include smaller shrubs, invasives, and trees with only one example. Also there are a few tree species that used to be here, but are now gone. Here is my list, with some comments.

Common
1-4. Four kinds of oaks, at least. White Oak (Quercus alba), by far the most common tree around here, plus Northern Red Oak (Quercus rubra), Willow Oak (Quercus phellos), and Black Oak (Quercus velutina). There may be more oaks here, but these for sure.
5-6. Hickory – two kinds at least, Mockernut Hickory (Carya tomentosa) and Pignut Hickory (Carya glabra). There may be more hickories here, maybe shagbark.
7. American Holly (Ilex opaca)
8. American Beech (Fagus grandifolia)
9. Tulip Tree or Tulip Poplar (Liriodendron tulipifera)
10. Sycamore (Platanus occidentalis)
11. Dogwood (Cornus florida)
12. Black Tupelo or Blackgum (Nyssa sylvatica)
13. Sweetgum (Liquidambar styraciflua)
14. Red Cedar (Juniperus virginiana)
15. Sassafras (Sassafras albidum)
16. River Birch (Betula nigra)
17. Hazel Alder (Alnus serrulata)
18. Red Maple (Acer rubrum) (one)
19. Hackberry (Celtis occidentalis) (one) [or maybe it’s a Sugarberry (Celtis laevigata)]
20. Southern Magnolia (Magnolia grandiflora) (Probably escaped domestication)
21. Sweetbay Magnolia (Magnolia virginiana) (ID hazy, maybe another magnolia)

Bush or Shrub-sized
22. Blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum)
23. Deerberry (Vaccinium stamineum)
24. Pinxsterflower (Rhododendron periclymenoides)
25. Mountain Laurel (Kalmia latifolia) (only small traces remain here)
26. Devil’s Walking Stick (Aralia spinosa)

Invasives
27. Tree of Heaven (Ailanthus altissima)
28. Persian Silk Tree (wrongly called Mimosa) (Albizia julibrissin)
29. Pawlonia (Paulownia tomentosa)
30. Tea Viburnum (Viburnum setigerum) (one)

Once present, now gone
Various pines (found nearby, but not in our woods anymore)
Walnut (found nearby, but not in our woods anymore)
Chestnut (all gone)

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