Posts Tagged 'trees'

Buckeyes in Bloom

Aesculus hippocastanumCommon Horsechestnut (Aesculus hippocastanum), a species originally from SE Europe/Asia, now widely cultivated. Note that some are yellow inside, some pinkish-red; the latter have already been pollinated. Aesculus X carneaRed Horsechestnut, a hybrid of Horsechestnut and Red Buckeye, Aesculus X carnea. (Unless it’s a hybrid of Red Buckeye and Yellow Buckeye, Aesculus X hybrida.) The above two are near-neighbors in Green-Wood.Aesculus flavaYellow Buckeye (A. flava), also known as Sweet Buckeye and Big Buckeye, has much less showy flowers. The stamens don’t even project (as they do for the Ohio Buckeye (A. glabra). This is a magnificent specimen tucked into the edge of the Long Meadow in Prospect Park; it usually produces a rich crop of seeds, known as buckeyes or conkers. Yellow Buckeye is native to the Ohio River valley and the nearby Appalachian region.

Tuliptree Flowers

Liriodendron tulipiferaLiriodendron tulipifera: these are usually so far up these tall trees that they’re hard to see.Liriodendron tulipiferaBut not all of them. Liriodendron tulipiferaLiriodendron tulipiferaBlooming now. They smell like some childhood candy I can never place…

Blighted! But…

Castanea dentataOne of the American Chestnuts (Castanea dentata) planted in Prospect Park a dozen years ago has succumbed to the pathogenic fungus Cryphonectria parasitica, the dreaded Chestnut Blight. This is in stark contrast to the tree right next to it, which is long with leaf now. But the death was inevitable: these were non-resistant trees. There are, however, some newly planted resistant hybrids nearby.

More about these trees.

More pictures of the spiny husks and fruits.


Trillium, Herb Robert, Hawthorn

Trillium grandiflorumTrillium grandiflorum.Geranium robertianumGeranium robertianum, growing in the crotch of a tree. As with above, in the Native Flora Garden.CrataegusCrataegus…The ringer of the trio. Native hawthorns have white flowers. This looks like the English Midland Hawthorn, C. laevigata, perhaps the cultivar “Crimson Cloud.”

Sunset Park Elm

UlmusIt’s been a month since I’ve last updated you with a picture of the local American Elm. Ulmus

Some Recent Trees

Liriodendron tulipiferaA return to this young, and therefore low, Tuliptree (Liriodendron tulipifera). Remember how tiny these were back in March?Asimina trilobaLooking very weedy, several Pawpaws (Asimina triloba) sprout in the Brooklyn Wedding Venue’s Native Flora Garden. The tree turns out to be clonal, explains the sprouts. This is a new tree for me, just barely in range here in NY and more generally found in the south and mid-west. Asimina trilobaThe flowers, which start out green, turn purple! They are evidently pollinated by flies and beetles attracted to the faint odor of rotting meat (I didn’t catch anything on the nose). I wonder if these will produce the globular fruit, said to be rather tasty?Quercus muehlenbergiiThese are the young leaves of a Yellow Oak, which is also known as Chestnut and Chinkapin Oak (Quercus muehlenbergii). I’m more familiar with the Chestnut Oak moniker, but it just goes to show you how common names can be confusing. There’s a big one of these off in a corner of the Garden, though the leaves still small. We’re within the range of this species, but it’s more common to the south and west.

Wool Sower

wool1Galls are some of the most fascinating things found on the planet. At least in my opinion. wool2And this is one of the most spectacular. This is created by a tiny gall wasp, Callirhytis seminator, the Wool Sower Gall (-maker). But of course that is a mis-leading statement. The gall is actually created by the plant, in this case an oak, in response to irritation/agitation/chemistry of the wasp. The wasp is warping the plant’s defenses for its own uses, protecting its eggs and feeding its larvae. IMG_7184

These were discovered at Fort Nonsense Park, site of a Confederate earthworks to defend slavery, in Mathews Co., Virginia. But we also have them up here in Brooklyn.


Bookmark and Share

Join 427 other followers


Nature Blog Network