White oak's tree hunter

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David L.
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Jul 15, 2018 6:22 am

White oak's tree hunter

Post by David L. » Sun Jul 15, 2018 6:59 am

Hi everyone,

I am living in CAN along the US Border (Franklin County of NY state). I am a forest ingineer that love trees, so i would describe myself as a tree hunter, recording and mesuring in my gps all unusual trees I encounter.

Here in my area, being the northermost extension of the Adirondacks, I discovered a white oak grove containing about 300 of them. It seems no one was aware of them. So I'd like to know more about the white oak in this area. Here is my project:

I would like to know for my own interest where are the nearest white oak trees or stands in Ney York state, either in Franklin, Clinton or St-Lawrence counties. In other words, I am looking for the northermost white oaks known of NY state. Is there any in the Adirondacks?

I would like to understand how the white oaks in my town established there, on a rocky soil (bed rock of sandstone). Do the seeds come from other oak stands a little southward in the States?

It is a very rare tree here, and very isolated, so I wonder if it is more abundant in these 3 aforementioned counties.

For instance, are there any in the Flat rock state forest? They seem to grow on poor, dry and rocky soils, where competition is less agressive.

I did mesure all the diameters of the white oaks here, so I would also like to do comparison with other stands and share the information.

Thanks for your help!
David

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Erik Danielsen
Posts: 898
Joined: Mon Mar 17, 2014 5:46 pm

Re: White oak's tree hunter

Post by Erik Danielsen » Sun Jul 15, 2018 10:06 am

Hello David, and welcome to the boards.

The furthest north that I've personally documented white oak in NY is at Indian Creek Nature Center near Rennsaeler Falls, in St. Lawrence county. The dominant oak at the site is actually Bur Oak, including some old and large trees. I've been meaning to report here on those for some time- hopefully I'll finally write it up and post it soon. These white oaks did not seem to be isolated in the landscape however- I would suggest that they can be expected to be widespread, if not abundant, through much of the St. Lawrence river plain. The limiting factor on their presence in the Adirondacks is not just the northern latitude, but the elevation. I see that Flat Rock State Forest is mostly between 800-1000' in elevation. Sites at this elevation and lower are probably your best bet for finding similar populations even further north.

Erik

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ElijahW
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Joined: Sun Jun 26, 2011 4:04 pm

Re: White oak's tree hunter

Post by ElijahW » Sun Jul 15, 2018 3:41 pm

David,

Welcome. White oak is present in all three counties you mentioned, but my guess is that it’s most prevalent in Clinton County, especially around Plattsburgh. As Erik wrote, Bur Oak, as well as Swamp White and perhaps Chinkapin Oak also grow at least to the Canadian border.

White oak can be found around the edges of the Adirondack Park, but in very few places inside it. It seems to have a similar distribution to Pitch Pine, at least in eastern NY. I’m not sure where the closest natural white oak stand in the US would be, relative to Havelock, but I would head east and south, toward Plattsburgh. You’ll find plenty there.

Elijah
"There is nothing in the world to equal the forest as nature made it. The finest formal forest, the most magnificent artificially grown woods, cannot compare with the grandeur of primeval woodland." Bob Marshall, Recreational Limitations to Silviculture in the Adirondacks

David L.
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Jul 15, 2018 6:22 am

Re: White oak's tree hunter

Post by David L. » Mon Jul 16, 2018 12:11 pm

Hi Elijah and Erik,

thank you for the information. The status of bur oak and swamp white oak is well documented in my region. Chinkapin is not known yet in the Quebec province. What kind of habitat would you suggest to search for white oak? Similar to pitch pine, you mean the rock outcrops, thin soil, acid forest, pine stands, summits? Do you know one precise location I could observe it, so I can get familiar with the habitat.

Thanks!

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ElijahW
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Joined: Sun Jun 26, 2011 4:04 pm

Re: White oak's tree hunter

Post by ElijahW » Mon Jul 16, 2018 5:56 pm

David,

You put me on the spot, and I really had to think your question through. On Wellesley Island (the Canadian portion of which is Hill Island) in St. Lawrence County, the Minna Anthony Nature Center https://parks.ny.gov/environment/nature ... tails.aspxis a great place to see lots of naturally growing white oaks. These trees are rooted in the thin soil typical of the Thousand Islands region and don’t get very large. Other sites around Wellesley Island with better quality, deeper soils also have open grown large oaks, but I don’t know if they’re naturally occurring.

Franklin County is a difficult one. I can’t think of a specific location to look at white oaks. I’m not aware of any public land to explore along the St. Lawrence, which might be the best place to look. The white oaks I’ve seen in Franklin County have been on the roadside, specifically along NY-37.

In Clinton County, I’d look for public areas between Plattsburgh and the mountains. Specifically, NY-9N, from I-87 to Ausable Forks, has plenty of white oaks. Here again, I don’t know if there’s a good park to visit to find what you’re looking for, but you’ll find roadside oaks aplenty. This region differs from St. Lawrence County in that the soils are generally deeper and very sandy. White oaks will grow in both habitats, given plenty of exposure to the sun.

I hope that helps,

Elijah
"There is nothing in the world to equal the forest as nature made it. The finest formal forest, the most magnificent artificially grown woods, cannot compare with the grandeur of primeval woodland." Bob Marshall, Recreational Limitations to Silviculture in the Adirondacks

David L.
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Jul 15, 2018 6:22 am

Re: White oak's tree hunter

Post by David L. » Tue Jul 17, 2018 4:34 am

Thank you for the locations.

Erik suggessted Renselaer Falls wich is little more up north in NY. I just heard of a new discovery of white oak along the st-larence river in St-Regis Island, in Akwesasne mohak reserve, just at the border!

I have to say I am more interested about occurences in Clinton county, so distribution inland rather than along the St-Lawrence River (for now!). Suggestion of NY 9N is interesting and is a good start. It is about 80 km from Havelock and its white oaks, so I am sure there are other locations in between. I'll try Flat Rock state forest along the way. Also, I should try The Gulf Unique area, where pitch pine grows. Sandy soils is interesting, I didn't think about it. For sure in my region it doesn't grow in deep soil naturally, the competition of other species is some how too agressive.

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