Monday, February 12, 2018

Another Walk in the Woods

Over the past week I have discovered another beautiful woodlot to walk through, led initially down the trail by a friend.  It's a larger woodlot, not far away, and very interesting to walk around.  I've actually been there three times over the past week, on snowshoes each time of course.

It turned out to have a large patch of Hemlock-Beech forest, a forest type I don't see very often here in the valley.  I can't think of another example as nice as this one.

Those tiny Hemlock needles are easy to identify once you learn them, at least on the shorter saplings where they're close to ground level.

There's also a lot of Yellow Birch, making this woodlot even more interesting.  This is like an undisturbed old climax forest for southern Ontario.  Can you recognize the large trunk to the right of centre with it's curlicues of paper hanging off the bark?

Surprisingly, there isn't much Sugar Maple, although this one is a great specimen - tall and straight.  Sugar Maple is usually the most common tree in our deciduous woodlots.

Another big tree, a White Ash.

There were a lot of American Beech, but they're often not looking very healthy, attacked by the beech bark disease, a combination of an insect and fungus that usually kills off the large trees first.  There seems to be little that can be done about it.

While the leaves are still hanging on on the smaller saplings, the unique long sharp buds are already there, waiting for spring.

There's a stream flowing through the woods, closer to the north side, with quite a steep embankment where you can look down on the stream from above.  I think we need a bridge someplace!

If you get through to the back of the woodlot there's a large pond that's been created which looked very inviting.  I expect it's a great place for wildlife in the spring.

The beech bark disease causes severe cankering and results in misshapen tree trunks.  This one was a classic example!  Can you see right through?  Must be a big hollow in here.  This is a woodlot I'll be back to regularly, and sharing more photos of sooner rather than later.


19 comments:

  1. Wow! Looks like a great place for botanizing! Old trees and wetlands! Have fun!

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  2. After seeing this post I think I need a nice walk in the woods! What a lovely spot that is!

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  3. Just from viewing this sample, it;s pretty obvious that patch of forest is well worth exploring and a great place to spend some time.

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  4. Stunning !
    What a magical and serene place.
    Thank you for sharing it's beauty.
    ~Jo

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  5. The sugar maple and white ash photos are great!

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  6. I feel that I was on the walk with you ... and my Dad - who helped me learn how to identify trees. What a spectacular variety of specimens - I do have a soft spot in my heart for hemlocks and ash.

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  7. Yellow Birch, I could see an image of a bear, slightly to the right, and in your last photo, a twisted face. Great series of photos, with trees and a hidden stream, Some great times there when the snow melts.

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  8. It looks magnificent in the snow, as I'm sure it does at other times of year too. Pity about the tree disease, we have some species which are being affected by various pests here as well; there never seems to be anything that can be done except hope that there's a small population of trees somewhere that are naturally resistant.

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  9. Wonderful wal and photos, FG, though I got a little cold looking at it. Not heard the expression 'woodlot' before; I like it.

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  10. Our beech and ash trees are taking an awful beating here in E.Ontario. Nice versatile forest there!

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  11. That final pic looks like a face in agony. Seems fitting. Our state park is losing all its big beech and has begun planting resistant saplings. But it will take forever for them to reach maturity.

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  12. A beautiful area to explore in winter!

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  13. Hope you didn't bump you chin into that tree.

    Lovely shots

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  14. you really know how to photograph the snow, these are gorgeous. i have some hemlock shrubs along my back property line, i love them for the privacy they offer!! the last image looks like a face to me!!

    and you are right about this part of new jersey, no more snow it has all melted!!

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  15. Lovely photos . I love trees and how gnarly and beautiful they are . I like all the textures with in the trees and different types of woods , hubs here is a wood worker so I can appreciate all that more to . Sun is shining and temps are rising here + 3 right now. Thanks for sharing have a good day !

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  16. Beautiful and great winter photos!

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  17. I am loving seeing some winter photos. We have not had much snow this year. In fact, we had our first real storm this past weekend. I never thought I would miss snow so much.

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  18. Love the last two shots, very expressive trees:)

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  19. Wow! Looks like a great place for botanizing! Old trees and wetlands! Have fun!

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