Friday, February 26, 2016

Ramble Report February 25 2016

Today's report is written by Don. Here's the link to Don's Facebook album of today's Ramble.

28 Ramblers braved the chilly weather for the second ramble of the year.

Today's reading:

Linda read an excerpt from The Forest Unseen by David George Haskell, page 24:

"The impression of desolation in the [winter forest] is superficial. Within the [forest] are [millions] of plant cells, each one wrapped into itself, intensified in its withdrawal. The quiet gray exterior of plants, like gunpowder, belies the energy that is latent here. So, although titmice and other birds give a vigorous display of life in January, they are trifles compared to the power stored in the quiescent plants. When spring sparks the [plants], the energy released will carry the whole forest, birds included, through another year."

Today's route:  Leaving the arbor, we made our way down to the Administration Building, where we took the Scout Connector Trail, from the Adminstration Building up to the China and Asia section of the International Garden.  From here, we followed the paved path east to the Purple Trail, which we took as far as the Purple Trail spur.  We walked up the spur a short distance then returned to the International Garden and made our way to the Visitor Center and enjoyed conversation and refreshments at Donderos' Kitchen.

Parking Lot:

Cross section of tree trunk

Linda presented a description of the major components of a tree, describing the location of all of the vascular systems and the cork or bark layer.
Red Maple in full flower

Red maple....something red on red maple during each flowers, red fruit, leaf stalks and, in the fall, the leaves turn red.  Older bark is split and furrowed but younger bark, higher up, is smooth.

White Oak bark
White oak....lower bark is blocky but higher up, the bark takes on the typical shaggy character attributed to white oaks.  Bark has low elasticity.

Administration Building:

Red Maple bark
Red Maple near the Arbor:  Older bark on trunk, with less elasticity in its cork cambium, is furrowed where the cambium has split.  Younger branches higher up are smooth.

Japanese maple

Red Maple female flowers
Red maple, with flowers....female on the ends of style branches in the flower receive pollen.....wind pollinated, convenient since late winter does not provide a lot of insects for insect pollination.

Chalk Maple retained leaves
Marcesence...retention of dead leaves throughout most of winter into early spring.  American beech, chalk maple, hophornbeam and, to a lesser extent, musclewood.   Why?  Evolutionary leftover from days when all trees were evergreen.  May deter deer from browsing new leaf buds.   Also tends to be more prominent on lower limbs.

Scout Connector Trail:

Red maple leaves have teeth, sugar maple-type leaves don't.  “The sugar rotted all of the teeth away!”

Florida maple (aka southern sugar maple) versus Chalk Maple discussion:. Florida maple leaves are whitened beneath, Chalk Maple leaves are green beneath.  The “chalk” in Chalk Maple refers to the whitish bark.

Leaf gall

False turkey tail mushroom

Mustard yellow polypore mushroom

Pignut Hickory bark
Pignut hickory....has occasional horizontal bands or breaks in the diamond shaped pattern of the bark
northern red oak with “ski trails”

At bend in trail, hophornbeam with cat scratch bark

Chattahoochee(?) Trillium
Trillium...Chattahoochee most likely....seeds transported by yellow jackets from Dunson NFG, perhaps.  Like Ants, yellow jackets like fatty elaisosomes and transport them from where seeds were dropped to their nests.  Seeds dropped along the way can sprout.

Cucumber Magnolia terminal bud
Cucumber tree....cucumber magnolia....fuzzy buds, similar to Ashe's magnolia, but much smaller and not as white appearing.  Bark is soft and flaky, red inner bark, forms small plates

Luna moth cocoon
Luna moth cocoon found on the ground.  Luna moths pupate 

on the ground, Polyphemus moths pupate on branches.

Diatrype virescens fungus on Beech twig
Diatrype virescens at beech tree, ascomycete fungus   seen on dead/dying limbs/twigs – black spots erupting from bark layer

Black Tubakia leaf spot on northern red oak leaes...probably caused by the Ascomycete fungus Tubakia dryina

Painted buckeye     a piedmont shrub buckeye  beautiful yellow flowers. Earliest shrub to leaf out in Piedmont.

Hophornbeam again

White oak with white fungal patches....fungus feeds only on bark  jury out on fungus that causes patches; one paper attributes it to Athelia macularis (Lair) and not the hornbeam disk fungus.

Musclewood (AKA American hornbeam)
Musclewood.....barely floodplains, mainly, liking dampish roots, but can be found on upland soils near drainages

Resurrection ferns, 40-50 up
Resurrection ferns high up in two trees

Black gum   blocky bark, square/rectangular blocks, horizontal branches

White Ash bark
White ash....spongy, corky bark, with occasional girdles of smoother bark, opposite twigs/limbs....probably white ash because of light rusty color of inner bark

Mockernut Hickory - large terminal bud
Mockernut hickory, with pronounced diamonds and thick, coarse twigs and fat leaf buds

Downed trees loaded with false turkey tails, mustard yellow polypores, turkey tails

Split-gill mushrooms
Common split gill mushrooms

Hairy Bittercress (AKA Creasy Greens)
Hairy Bittercress   

Winged elm, young with minor wings and very thin outer twigs

Sweetgum sapling also with minor wings, but with thicker twigs and buds, youngest growth brassy/bronzy green color

Pokeweed skeleton

Black cherry

Box elder, actually a maple....ash leaf maple,,,,Manitoba maple

Yaupon holly....native americans made “black drink” an emetic...popular landscape plant now


Purple Trail Spur:


Hornbeam disc mushroooms

Short leaf pine...small cones, short needles, busy crown, the bark with tiny resin pits or canals not seen on Loblolly bark

Loblolly pine  fewer cones, longer needles, long limbed


Red maple
Acer rubrum
White oak
Quercus alba
Japanese maple
Acer palmatum
Chalk maple
Acer leucoderme
False turkey tail mushroom
Stereum ostrea
Mustard yellow polypore mushroom
Phellinus gilvus
Pignut hickory
Carya glabra
Northern red oak
Quercus rubra
Ostraya virginiana
Chattahoochee trillium
Trillium decipiens
Cucumber tree/cucumber magnolia
Magnolia acuminata
Luna moth
Actias luna

Diatrype virescens
Tubakia leaf spot (on Q. rubra)
Tubakia dryina
Painted buckeye
Aesculus sylvatica
Carpinus caroliniana
Resurrection fern
Pleopeltis polypodiodes
Black gum
Nyssa sylvatica
White ash
Fraxinus americana
Mockernut hickory
Carya tomentosa
Turkey tail mushrooms
Trametes versicolor
Common split gill mushroom
Schizophyllum commune
Hairy cress
Cardamine hirsuta
Winged elm
Ulmus alata
Liquidambar styraciflua
American pokeweed
Phytolacca americana
Black cherry
Prunus serotina
Box elder
Acer negundo
Hairy bittercress
Cardamine hirsuta
Yaupon holly
Ilex vomitoria
Galium aparine
Hornbeam disc mushroooms
Aleurodiscus oakseii
Short leaf pine
Pinus echinata
Loblolly pine
Pinus taeda

1 comment:

  1. Wonderful descriptions. I will try to make it next week. Unfortunately, I was sick yesterday. Thanks, Bill Pierson.


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