Posts Tagged 'trees'

Sunset Park Elm

UlmusI’ve been photographing this big American Elm in Sunset Park for the last year.UlmusThe long shadows if not the temperature tell of the days drawing nearer. Today’s the first day of the end of daylight savings time, meaning an hour sooner sunset, and we’ve still a month and more to go to the shortest day. Let’s revel in the voluptuous dark of the night.shadowsAnd the calligraphy of sunlight and swooping branches…


Carya glabra
Pignut Hickory, Carya glabra. Let this fill your screen…Carya glabraIn addition to birds, bugs (warmth-dependent), and the last of asters, we’ll be looking for similar leaf color tomorrow on our tour of Prospect Park.


Pseudotsuga menziesiiYears ago I visited friends living just north of San Fransisco. My flight was delayed eight hours or so, so I arrived in Oakland at four in the morning, when there wasn’t much to do but watch dawn rise over the continent… After a short, unsuccessful nap, I was dropped off in Muir Woods National Monument, where I wandered in a glorious haze-daze amid the Coast Redwoods and Douglas-firs. I was practically the only person there on a weekday morning and, boy, was I flying high! Not because I’d taken anything, but because of the lack of sleep, not to mention the invigorating air, and, of course, those crazy trees.img_0854The West’s superlative trees include the tallest—the Coast Redwoods (Sequoia sempervirens)—and the biggest, Giant Sequoia (Sequoiadendron giganteum). But the “Doug fir” (Pseudotsuga menziesii) is right up there, too, second only to the Coast Redwood in height. They may get a little lost in our (Eastern) minds, though, in the shadow of the fabled “redwoods.”

The trees are named after David Douglas, 1799-1834, the Scottish-born explorer of the Northwest who botanized the region before dying in a freak accident on Hawaii. They are not, however, fir trees, which are in the Abies genus. (That’s why the formal common name has that hypen: Douglas-fir.) Douglas missed out on having his name honored in the scientific or binomial name of the species, which honors Archibald Menzies (1754-1842), another botanizing Scotsman, who sailed with Vancouver. Also, check out that genus: pseudo tsuga, fake hemlocks.

It’s their misfortune to be amazing timber.img_0860I had a chance to visit some more of these mighty trees in Portland. It was a delightful return engagement.dougfThe classic silhouette, but within the woods they look rather different. This, by the way, is made by Clear Creek Distillery in Portland. And it is delightfully odd.

Limbs Up

treeA dead street tree presents a wintery image on 9th Street. One of those cultivars that reaches high.

Nyssa Shine

nyssaThese shiny red leaves are Nyssa sylvatica, Black Tupelo or Black Gum. One of the great fall color trees.

Have you been bathing in fall colors?

Sunset Park Elm

treeFall is coming! And about time, too! tree2The state of the elm. From this southwesterly perspective, it is hanging onto the slope of the moraine with everything it has.

Previous states of the elm.

You’ve Been Warned

dogwoodThis is a kousa dogwood of some variety, multi-trunked with interesting mottled bark. img_9850They say the fruit is edible. I tried one once. Meh. It was very woodsy.dogwoodooFor some mammals, though, that’s not an issue. Raccoon scat, if I’m not mistaken.


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