Tuesday, May 02, 2006

More Mystery Tree Blogging!

The Arboreality tree blog is filled with mystery trees, and today I’d like to share one of my favorite trees from around the farm. This one happens to be visible out of the upstairs skylight, and it looms over the better part of the driveway beside the cottage.

first saw this tree at Arboreality in winter, when its graceful, leafless lines crossed the cold blue sky. This tree looks great in snow: you can see it as the fourth image down in the En Hiver post. You can also see this tree in the third and fourth images of the Chasing the Sunrise post.

Naturally, I have been eager to learn its identity, especially because I haven’t found many others like it around the property, and certainly none so big as this one.

Waiting for this tree to give up its secrets has been like watching a pot of water waiting for it to boil! Second only to the black walnut, this tree was just about the last one to open its leaves.

From the pictures above, I think you’ll agree that it was well worth the wait. This tree is growing over the driveway between the two garden sheds. The second to the last image showing few leaves was taken on April 17, and you can see how dramatic the change has been over the last couple weeks.

I love its big, fat catkins and crazy little red tops (which are mostly hidden in these images). The leaf arrangement and catkins lead me to believe that this tree might be a pecan, a hickory, or even a butternut. If you have other suggestions, please let me know!


  1. The tree looks like a large maple, but the leaves remind me of spruce or a humid weather regioned plant that gets a lot of sun.

  2. Hi Ducklover! This tree does indeed get a lot of sun. :) I'm afraid that it is neither maple nor spruce... but the mystery continues!

  3. wow wow wow. great photos. I love your photos

  4. Thank you GodKnows - I'm so pleased that you like them.

    I also really enjoy reading your blog and learning about culture and cuisine in Viet Nam. Thank you for visiting!

  5. It looks so familiar (in the same family as a tree I have seen) I will have to do some research.

  6. Well Ducklover, in Washington we have the alders who also grow catkins like these, so perhaps that is what looks so familiar? Many trees grow these types of "flowers" (if you look close, you'll see that the wormies are actually long strings of tiny flowers). Also, if you look closely at alders, you'll see that the catkins and cones are stratified (layered by height) through the tree, so that it can be self-pollinating). Alders, however, have very different leaves than the tree we see here! Ask The Big Blue Phrog for assistance in locating an alder... they're everywhere! :)


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