Another Carolina hemlock site in Ohio

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Steve Galehouse
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Another Carolina hemlock site in Ohio

Post by Steve Galehouse » Mon Feb 18, 2013 10:58 pm

ENTS-

Today surveyed another stand of Carolina hemlock in NE Ohio. This was on a north facing bluff, about a mile west of a stand of Carolina hemlocks reported several years ago, along a north facing bluff of a small stream. 30-50 trees of various sizes/ages, up to 59.8' x 36'' cbh. They look very natural, not planted. Photos to follow tomorrow.

Steve
every plant is native somewhere

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edfrank
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Re: Another Carolina hemlock site in Ohio

Post by edfrank » Mon Feb 18, 2013 11:04 pm

Great news Steve. I look forward top your photos.
"I love science and it pains me to think that so many are terrified of the subject or feel that choosing science means you cannot also choose compassion, or the arts, or be awe by nature. Science is not meant to cure us of mystery, but to reinvent and revigorate it." by Robert M. Sapolsky

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Will Blozan
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Re: Another Carolina hemlock site in Ohio

Post by Will Blozan » Tue Feb 19, 2013 7:42 am

Steve,

Could these stands really have been overlooked until recently? That would be a seriously disjunct (and ecologically significant) site. Regardless of history, I do hope the stands will be treated for HWA.

Will

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Steve Galehouse
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Re: Another Carolina hemlock site in Ohio

Post by Steve Galehouse » Tue Feb 19, 2013 2:32 pm

ENTS, Ed, Will-

Here are a few pics of the second Carolina hemlock population. The site and exposure is entirely different from the first one. The second population on a small protected bluff along Salt Run, a minor creek; no sandstone cliffs present as with the other site.
DSCI2281.JPG
DSCI2279.JPG
DSCI2278.JPG
The next shows a comparison of two trees, taken from the same vantage point in 1972 and yesterday, a 41 year time span. Judging from the growth rate displayed these photos, is it reasonable to think the trees in the B&W photo could have achieved their height in a maximum of 39 years(1933 was the earliest the CCC was operating)?
Hemlock 1972-2013.JPG
And a comparison of aerial photos from 1936 and recently---the magenta dot is in the same spot in both, the cluster of trees to the left of the dot seems similar in both photos.
richie_overlay[2].jpg
Will, they haven't really been overlooked, but there has little academic interest in them. The park they are in is now part of the CVNP. I think it has been assumed that they were planted by the CCC because the notion of a disjunct population was not considered seriously. I think there are still stands to be found in this area.

Steve
every plant is native somewhere

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edfrank
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Re: Another Carolina hemlock site in Ohio

Post by edfrank » Tue Feb 19, 2013 3:43 pm

Will,

Steve and I have been discussing that issue for a least a couple of years. It doesn't seem unreasonable to me that they are naturally occurring disjunct populations. In the last photo above these seem to me to be the same trees in both photos and they were well established and spread out across the landscape by 1936. That is not consistent with a CCC origin for the trees, nor escapees from a CCC planting. As Steve pointed out to me the Carolina hemlocks in that color photo are more yellowish in shade that the eastern hemlocks. They also to me look to be more scraggly, as do the cluster and some individual trees in the older black and white photo.
This is a broader view of the Richie Ledges area from 1936 that Steve Galehouse had sent to me.  It is the source of the insert in the dual image above.
This is a broader view of the Richie Ledges area from 1936 that Steve Galehouse had sent to me. It is the source of the insert in the dual image above.
I really think this is the case of people thinking they know the answer to the tree origin and never bothered to consider the possibility that they are a naturally occurring disjunct population.

Ed
"I love science and it pains me to think that so many are terrified of the subject or feel that choosing science means you cannot also choose compassion, or the arts, or be awe by nature. Science is not meant to cure us of mystery, but to reinvent and revigorate it." by Robert M. Sapolsky

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Steve Galehouse
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Re: Another Carolina hemlock site in Ohio

Post by Steve Galehouse » Tue Feb 19, 2013 11:19 pm

Ed, ENTS-

If Carolina hemlock was used as a reforestation species in the CCC era, I would have expected a number of other parks in Ohio or Midwest or Northeast states to have been planted with the species. I haven't seen any record of any other Carolina hemlock stands outside of the purported native range, which leads me to believe these are disjunct native populations.

Steve
every plant is native somewhere

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