Boogerman Pine update and other news from Catalochee

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Will Blozan
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Boogerman Pine update and other news from Catalochee

Post by Will Blozan » Sat Aug 07, 2010 5:42 pm

ENTS,

Today I took a trip to see five trees and remeasure and check for winter storm damage.

"Boogerman Pine"
I (thankfully) found this tree relatively unscathed by the heavy winter snows. I saw no top damage, and by comparing photos of the top to previous trips the high point is still intact. There was definitely some branch loss in the upper crown and below by he's hangin' in there! Unfortunately the neighboring Q-tip Pine (165') is now dead; snapped at about 130'. The Q-tip Pine was the oldest known eastern white pine in the Smokies at 355 years via core sample. The lush understory growth spawned by the hemlock deaths obscured a clear shot for remeasuring The Boog. I will have to wait until winter...

"Boogerman Hemlock"
This fine, treated tree just ~50 feet from "The Boog" was last measured to 159.8', and I was hopeful that it would be a sole representative of the 160 Club by now. Well, it is now about 9 feet tall; snapped and fallen across the trail. Rough ring count was ~270 years.

"Hoglen Pine"
This white pine showed no storm damage and I was hopeful it would be 180' by now. Not quite; 178.3'

"Winding Stair chestnut"
A nice American chestnut which held the Smokies hieght record at 75' has now fallen victim to the blight. Ugh.

"Winding Stair Loner"
One of the finest hemlocks discovered in the Tsuga Search Project, this 158+ honker was poised to reach 160' and as of last measurement was among the tallest LIVING eastern hemlocks left on earth. However, in spite of three doses of insecticide this tree was found dead on arrival today. ^(*#@^*@ adelgids!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Will

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edfrank
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Re: Boogerman Pine update and other news from Catalochee

Post by edfrank » Sat Aug 07, 2010 6:08 pm

Will,

I doubt the Boogerman Hemlock will make 160 anytime soon. My cousin Rob was fishing on one of my trip to Isla de Mona (Puerto Rico). He caught a large fish and hauled it in. Unfortunately by the time he got it back to the boat it was only about a foot long. Something had bitten it off just behind the gills in the landing process. So I told him I had caught lots of fish over 12" long. We have lots of hemlocks taller than 9 feet.

I am curious about teh chestnut. Do you have any idea whether it was a first, second, or even third generation tree after the blight? If the bigger one at Clear Creek State Forest dies, I want to core it to get an age.

RIP hemlocks.

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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Will Blozan
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Re: Boogerman Pine update and other news from Catalochee

Post by Will Blozan » Sat Aug 07, 2010 6:14 pm

Ed,

I think the chestnut was third growth- not old at all, maybe 35 years or so. Yes, the hemlocks are all but slaughtered now in 'Loochee. I saw individual big trees today that were treated (4X) in 2005, 2006, 2008, and 2009 that are now dead. I am beginning to think that the biggest hemlocks are unsavable once heavily impacted with HWA. Well, at least with imidacloprid. Dinotefuran has saved some big ones including the immense Cheoah Hemlock, now the sole Tsuga Search survivor.

Will

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edfrank
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Re: Boogerman Pine update and other news from Catalochee

Post by edfrank » Sat Aug 07, 2010 6:48 pm

Will,
Will Blozan wrote:Ed,
Yes, the hemlocks are all but slaughtered now in 'Loochee. I saw individual big trees today that were treated (4X) in 2005, 2006, 2008, and 2009 that are now dead. I am beginning to think that the biggest hemlocks are unsavable once heavily impacted with HWA. Well, at least with imidacloprid. Dinotefuran has saved some big ones including the immense Cheoah Hemlock, now the sole Tsuga Search survivor.
Will
What would you recommend as an approach, given your current knowledge, to preserving the old hemlock trees at places like Cook Forest, where the HWA has not yet reached? And what would you recommend doing with regard to groves that are already infested with HWA?

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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James Parton
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Re: Boogerman Pine update and other news from Catalochee

Post by James Parton » Sat Aug 07, 2010 7:39 pm

Will,

Overall it did not appear to be a good day, with the Boogerman Hemlock snapped off and the Winding Stair Loner and Chestnut dead. That was a really nice chestnut and I wondered how long it would hold out. You expressed concern about the Winding Stair loner the last time I was in Cataloochee with you, last April. At least the great Boogerman Pine is ok. That's good news.

James
James E Parton
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Bardic Mentor
New Order of Druids

http://www.druidcircle.org/nod/index.ph ... Itemid=145

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mdavie
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Re: Boogerman Pine update and other news from Catalochee

Post by mdavie » Sat Aug 07, 2010 7:42 pm

Will-
Quite the bummer about the hemlocks, but I'm glad "The Boog" survived relatively unscathed. Did the hemlock break due to snow, or just die and become brittle?

Ed, I'd bet Will would agree: on trees that have no signs, if you catch them very, very quickly then imidacloprid can work, but dinotefuran is much quicker and dependable on large trees (and it seems to be at least a little less likely to cause spider mite outbreaks); it doesn't last as long, though. But if trees are already infested, it's definitely more likely to become systemic quickly and work better to knock them down.

Long term, though, we're going to have to find an effective biological control. I'm crossing everything— fingers, toes, limbs— for that to happen. Until then, there's just a limited arsenal to effectively control adelgid on large forest trees.

mileslowry

Re: Boogerman Pine update and other news from Catalochee

Post by mileslowry » Sun Aug 08, 2010 5:20 pm

Will,

How tough would it be to give me directions for the "Winding Stair Loner"? Up the trail from the Boog?

thanks
Miles

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Will Blozan
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Re: Boogerman Pine update and other news from Catalochee

Post by Will Blozan » Sun Aug 08, 2010 7:09 pm

Miles,

The Winding Stair Loner is a short but steep walk off the entrance road to Cataloochee not long after entering the park. Email me directly for details.

Mike,

The tall hemlock by The Boog was rotten and snapped. The top of the Q-tip Pine was not under the tree so I suspect it failed under a strong wind. The "X-trees" photo of years past would be interesting to take again now. The deep cathedral is gone and the only remaining tree of the four is the tuliptree...

Will

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dbhguru
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Re: Boogerman Pine update and other news from Catalochee

Post by dbhguru » Mon Aug 09, 2010 7:21 am

Will,

This is really crappy news. Thanks be to the tree gods that the Boogerman, itself survived. I remember the way the forest around the Boogerman Pine looked in the late 1990s. That is the way shall remember the marvels of Cataloochee. I still look at the photo of you, Mike Perlman, Rob, Celeste, etc. standing at the Boogerman's base - a moment captured in time.

The amount of tree mortality I saw in Colorado and Wyoming make me fearful that no place is safe. We humans will succeed in destroying the natural environment by our pollution and transporting alien plants and animals to all parts of the globe.

Bob
Robert T. Leverett
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Co-founder and President
Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest
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sjhalow
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Re: Boogerman Pine update and other news from Catalochee

Post by sjhalow » Mon Aug 09, 2010 8:23 pm

I vacationed with the family in the Asheville area last week. On Wednesday I hiked along the Boogerman trail with my daughter and nephew and saw many tall pines and some nice tulips along the trail. It was hot and humid and I couldn't help but think how much cooler and pleasant it would have been if all those beautiful towering hemlocks were still alive. It was a real eye opener to directly see the devastation that HWA has caused. Very, very sad.

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