A visit to the Leolyn Grove at Lilydale

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tomhoward
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Re: A visit to the Leolyn Grove at Lilydale

Post by tomhoward » Thu Jan 01, 2015 2:00 pm

Erik,

The heights of the trees at Leolyn Grove become more impressive. The Hemlock at 131.33 ft. is, as far as I know, the tallest in NY State. The Shagbark Hickory at 115 ft. is possibly the tallest in NY. The 117 ft. Shagbark Hickory in Liverpool School Maple Grove is tallest I know of in NY.

Tom Howard

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Erik Danielsen
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Re: A visit to the Leolyn Grove at Lilydale

Post by Erik Danielsen » Thu Jan 01, 2015 9:14 pm

They sure do just keep going up, Tom!

I met Chris again today on campus at SUNY Fredonia for an unfortunate event- HWA has recently been discovered on some of the trees in the campus woodlot, so bio prof Jon Titus held a small meeting to show everyone what to look for and then we worked together to survey the woods, flagging any infested hemlocks with orange tape. Altogether 48 trees were found to host the adelgid. This woodlot is about 8 miles from Lilydale. I'll have more to say about this woodlot in the near future but in the meantime- if Leolyn does have the tallest measured hemlocks in NYS, they may be under threat sooner than later.

On a happier note, I reminded him to send the photos from our recent measuring session, so here they are:
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Chris took this photo of the leolyn canopy from a nearby hillside. The tallest white pine is the larger crown on the left.
Chris took this photo of the leolyn canopy from a nearby hillside. The tallest white pine is the larger crown on the left.
Looking up at another of the tall black cherries. One of the hemlocks in the background is the 131' specimen
Looking up at another of the tall black cherries. One of the hemlocks in the background is the 131' specimen
The thick red oak near the edge of the woods
The thick red oak near the edge of the woods
Wrapping one of the large Black Cherries
Wrapping one of the large Black Cherries

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Erik Danielsen
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Re: A visit to the Leolyn Grove at Lilydale

Post by Erik Danielsen » Fri Mar 13, 2015 8:39 pm

I had an opportunity today for a quick jaunt up to lilydale, on a whim more than anything, and did a bit of postholing around in the deep wet snow to make more observations and a couple measurements. The tall black cherry I'm standing beside in the second photo above measured to 124.11' when I took the time to measure it on this visit. It's one of the largest present in girth but I was unsure of actual ground level due to the deep snow so didn't measure any girths.

More excitingly, there's a fourth white pine still present in the forest that had not been noted recently! It's a much younger tree, perhaps about 100' tall max and less than 6' cbh. It's growing tight up against a slightly smaller hemlock and the trunk splits about halfway up into two leaders that seem about equally vigorous, though one has a straighter stem. I also visited the third, near-dead white pine and found an excellent view of its full profile that yielded a height measurement of 126.48'. Girth not measured, again due to the snow, but definitely under 10' cbh. There's still green foliage present in the crown and a continuous bark strip connecting to the roots, so we'll see if it might hold on into the summer.

I also noted that the live bark connecting the roots of the old leaning oak to its crown is now a very thin strip indeed. It's one tenacious gnarled old tree, that's for sure.

My main interest in this visit was photographs; I'll attach a couple now but am working on some images of the largest white pine that will require some time to composite.
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In terms of overall form the 124.11' black cherry pictured is one of my favorite individual trees
In terms of overall form the 124.11' black cherry pictured is one of my favorite individual trees
The nearly-dead pine.
The nearly-dead pine.

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Erik Danielsen
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Re: A visit to the Leolyn Grove at Lilydale

Post by Erik Danielsen » Thu Nov 24, 2016 4:47 pm

Over the past several days I've been home in WNY and have visited some exciting sites; while I'll have to put off full reports on those for when I'm at a computer, I'd like to share some updates on the Leolyn Grove. I stopped by on Wednesday 11/23 and sought to check in on some of the known superlatives and fill in a couple gaps in terms of measured species.

The great white Pine has either grown a bit or I may have found a previously unseen top, as I measured from a different direction than I have in the past. It now measures 145.2 feet tall, with no change to girth that I could measure. The half-debarked 125'ish white Pine that was on it way out is now lying on the ground, snapped off at about 30' up.

Near that fallen Pine I measured three nice yellow birch, all fairly tall for the species/latitude: 97.5'/6.7'cbh, 94.8'/5.8'cbh, and 92.1'/6.7'cbh. I searched for the thicker one in the core of the stand but was unable to find it. Near these was another old-growth cucumber magnolia I had not noticed, a hunched tree I didn't measure but certainly appreciated.

Next to this was a second shagbark hickory, thin but tall at 114.3'/6.5'cbh. When I remeasured the other shagbark I had reported before I was unable to exceed 114', though that was when I dropped by very briefly on Sunday, just before dark in high winds. Based on my straight-up shot from last year I think there's a good chance that I missed the top due to the unfavorable conditions. The other hickory in the interior is definitely Pignut and measured to 104.4'/7.2'cbh.

I approached the former state champion Cucumber Magnolia from a different direction than usual and got a height of 115.2', a nice little bump. I did try to find a tall basswood but the best I could do was 103.2'. This stem (part of a cluster) looked to be around 6'cbh but was surrounded by the mess of another tree's fallen crown. I also measured a beech to 113.7'/8.8'cbh, a little taller than previously measured there. A red maple nearby put up 116.4'/9.4'cbh, which would have seemed exciting when I visited with Tom a couple years ago but, well, the number of sites around here with red maples in the ballpark of 120' just keeps growing...

The RHI10 for this site stands at 122.3 incorporating this visit's updates.

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dbhguru
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Re: A visit to the Leolyn Grove at Lilydale

Post by dbhguru » Sat Nov 26, 2016 2:27 pm

Erik,

Darn fine numbers. The abundance of site across the Northeast with red maples approaching 120 feet is impressive, especially given the belief by the majority that the species tops out at not much more than half that.

Bob
Robert T. Leverett
Co-founder, Native Native Tree Society
Co-founder and President
Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest
Co-founder, National Cadre

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Erik Danielsen
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Re: A visit to the Leolyn Grove at Lilydale

Post by Erik Danielsen » Wed Nov 30, 2016 2:04 pm

A couple photos from Wednesday to accompany the measurements.
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123.9'/11.9'cbh Black Cherry, one of the most beautiful trees in the forest in my clearly very objective opinion.
123.9'/11.9'cbh Black Cherry, one of the most beautiful trees in the forest in my clearly very objective opinion.
White Ash and Hemlocks
White Ash and Hemlocks

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Erik Danielsen
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Re: A visit to the Leolyn Grove at Lilydale

Post by Erik Danielsen » Sun Oct 22, 2017 11:47 am

I dropped by the grove this week to see how leaf-drop is progressing. It seems that "smaller" white pine rubbing up against a hemlock I noticed a couple years ago was worth more attention than I realized- it's at least 2'dbh and over 131' tall. The second-tallest white pine has put a couple feet on and is now at least 141.5, which means lilydale now has 2 140'+ trees. The good viewing window for the tallest pine isn't open yet. This is the first visit in which I've noticed the exceptional hobblebush understory, with one specimen measured to 11.2' tall.

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