North Chagrin Reservation

Moderators: edfrank, dbhguru

User avatar
dantheman9758
Posts: 52
Joined: Wed Jul 20, 2011 1:55 pm

Oak Tree ID help

Post by dantheman9758 » Mon Sep 26, 2011 4:44 pm

ENTS,

This weekend I hiked on a new trail at Chagrin which winds through an area with Oak trees not in their typical forms I am used to seeing. I'm having trouble with ID. I assume most of these oaks will end up being varieties of Red or White oak - which are the only two common oaks in the forest. Scarlet Oak is also native in these woods, but rare - I have never been able to ID any. I would say that any other oak species is possible but perhaps less likely.
The leaf in question is the small one on the bottom left.
The leaf in question is the small one on the bottom left.
The top row leaves are all off of the same tree, a large and mature oak at roughly 11' 7" bh that displayed exceptionally thick and rugged bark as well as large and broad leaves that looked a-typical of the nearby oaks. After looking online and through some books the leaf samples appear to match that of Red Oak. I think the irregular bark and the shallow leaf sinuses threw me off.
Most of the Red Oak bark is smooth unlike this tree
Most of the Red Oak bark is smooth unlike this tree

In the lower left row the left two leaves I ID as White Oak, this leaf shape isn't the typical broad form I see so I brought these home just to be sure. The bark on the tree was typical of White Oak.

The lower middle leaf came off of a tree which I can no longer recall why I collected it. Damn. No recollection of the bark either I will have to go back and check out the area. Just based on this leaf, I would heavily lean towards Red Oak. Yes?

And finally, the last leaf in the lower right hand side. This one is tough for me, I have not seen any other oaks in the forest with this leaf-type. There were no other trees near by that resembled this. The bark was dark charcoal gray-dark brown and rough. The leaves are tiny, this is the biggest one I found. The leaf has a waxier feel on the underside than all of the other specimens. I'd like to think this was a scarlet oak.
Another leaf at the base of the tree... unfortunately I have no other pictures of the bark aside from this but the texture and pattern of the bark remained like what can be seen in the picture
Another leaf at the base of the tree... unfortunately I have no other pictures of the bark aside from this but the texture and pattern of the bark remained like what can be seen in the picture
Also, I forgot to mention the Nature Center was trying to figure out if this was an American or European Chestnut. If any of you have a hunch let me know, they collected this from a tree near by the park that is dropping seeds.
Also, I forgot to mention the Nature Center was trying to figure out if this was an American or European Chestnut. If any of you have a hunch let me know, they collected this from a tree near by the park that is dropping seeds.
Dan
Last edited by dantheman9758 on Mon Sep 26, 2011 7:11 pm, edited 4 times in total.

User avatar
Steve Galehouse
Posts: 700
Joined: Mon Mar 08, 2010 11:50 pm

Re: North Chagrin Reservation

Post by Steve Galehouse » Mon Sep 26, 2011 6:47 pm

Dan-

The top three leaves in your photo are northern red oak, the two bottom left are white oak, the next to the right is northern red oak again, the bottom right looks most like pin oak but could be black or scarlet. Here are some pics I took a couple of years ago to help with ID:
oak leaves copy.jpg
acorns copy.jpg
Black, pin, and scarlet have a glossy upper leaf surface; northern red is more of a matte finish. Black oak typically has leaves that are broader in the shade, becoming more deeply lobed towards the top of the tree. Pin oak and scarlet oak foliage can be very similar, but usually pin oak foliage is more symmetrical. The acorns, when present, help with the ID. That said, they all hybridize, and where they are all native in an area they are often quite variable and difficult to separate. Bark characteristics of all the species vary tremendously with the individual and age of the tree.

Steve
every plant is native somewhere

User avatar
dantheman9758
Posts: 52
Joined: Wed Jul 20, 2011 1:55 pm

Re: North Chagrin Reservation

Post by dantheman9758 » Mon Sep 26, 2011 7:06 pm

Steve,

This is very helpful, I will be returning to this location to photograph the oak that has the smaller leaves. I would guess that it is not a Red Oak based on how different the other two Red Oak leaves look and feel. The reds both feel thin and papery, and they do have that matte finish that you describe. The small leaf is not like this, it is much more waxy and reflective top and bottom, and it is also thicker if that makes any sense.

By the way have you been feeling better lately?

Dan

User avatar
Rand
Posts: 1217
Joined: Tue Mar 16, 2010 9:25 pm

Re: North Chagrin Reservation

Post by Rand » Mon Sep 26, 2011 7:17 pm

The acf has a comparison page with these pictures:

de-sa.jpg
de-sa2.jpg
de-sa2.jpg (62.93 KiB) Viewed 1498 times


http://www.acf.org/Tree_ID/european.php

Also a here's picture from a different angle that shows an american burr on the right
chestnutbur.jpg

User avatar
Will Blozan
Posts: 1153
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2010 7:13 pm

Re: North Chagrin Reservation

Post by Will Blozan » Mon Sep 26, 2011 7:54 pm

Dan,

Was the small leaf collected in a different location from the others? Pin oak would most likely be found in wet areas; scarlet on dry ridges. I recall we only saw a few black oaks when I was there and the rest were all n. red oaks (of the red oak sub-group).

I seem to recall that the spines on American chestnut burs are not forked. Maybe the other way around?

Will

User avatar
Steve Galehouse
Posts: 700
Joined: Mon Mar 08, 2010 11:50 pm

Re: North Chagrin Reservation

Post by Steve Galehouse » Mon Sep 26, 2011 10:07 pm

Dan-

Your photo of the northern red oak bark is typical of a minority of individuals I find in the area. Older texts divided red oak into two races; Quercus borealis, with bark as in your photo and smaller acorns with more enclosing caps, and Quercus borealis maxima, the red oak that is most prevalent in NE Ohio, with smoother bark and larger acorns with more shallow caps. Both are found in our area, but the latter is much more common. They unfortunately have been combined taxonomically into Quercus rubra. To me, the two races look as distinct as black oak looks from scarlet oak. In central Ontario where we have a cabin only the rough barked small fruited form exists.

Steve
every plant is native somewhere

User avatar
dantheman9758
Posts: 52
Joined: Wed Jul 20, 2011 1:55 pm

Re: North Chagrin Reservation

Post by dantheman9758 » Mon Sep 26, 2011 10:26 pm

Will,

They were all found on what I would consider a dry upland site - and they were at or or near the top of a slope. The trail runs along the south-face of a wide scenic ravine in the park, the trees there are all exposed to more southern hemisphere sunlight and there is definitely a rapid runoff of water. The oaks were dominate, but so were hemlock and beech. There was a few blackgum, and maple, and I noticed at least one black cherry. Here's some photographs of the immediate area.
Blackgum, White Oak, and Hemlock growing in a trio along the trail
Blackgum, White Oak, and Hemlock growing in a trio along the trail
_MG_7343.JPG
_MG_7342.JPG
Last edited by dantheman9758 on Mon Sep 26, 2011 11:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Rand
Posts: 1217
Joined: Tue Mar 16, 2010 9:25 pm

Re: North Chagrin Reservation

Post by Rand » Mon Sep 26, 2011 10:30 pm

Will Blozan wrote:
I seem to recall that the spines on American chestnut burs are not forked. Maybe the other way around?

Will
Pretty sure I'm correct. I planted the tree from a seedling obtained from the American Chestnut council, that distributed seedlings from unblighted trees in Northern michigan in the late 80's early 90's.

It was cross pollinated with an asian chestnut (c. mollissima) I think. I'm assuming that doesn't change the character of the bur.

Post Reply

Return to “Ohio”