Albert Francis Blakeslee.

Trees in winter; their study, planting, care and identification online

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twisted, flatened or concave on one side, rounded on the other, tip
pointed. MISCROSCOPIC SECTION — showing 2 widely separated
fibro-vascular bundles, resin-ducts located intermediate between bundles
and periphery, a single layer of strengthening- cells around the resin-
ducts and one or more layers beneath the epidermis.

BUDS — Ovate, short-pointed, coated more or less thickly with resin.

FRUIT — Cones 1-2 inches long, without stalks, conic-oblong usually
curved and pointed forward, appearing between or sometimes at the
whorls of lateral branches, more or less distorted, remaining- closed
for several years, persisting on the tree often for a dozen years.
SCALES — in young cones with an incurved prickle, when mature
thickened at the apex without spines or prickles.

COMPARISONS — The short yellowish-green needles of the Jack Pine
will distinguish this species from other Pines. The longest needles some-
times approach in size short needles of the Scotch Pine ,but those of
the Scotch Pine are of a bluish-green color and moreover their cones
point backward instead of forward as in the Jack Pine.

DISTRIBUTION — Sterile, sandy soil; lowlands, boggy plains, rocky
slopes. Nova Scotia, northwesterly to the Athabasca river, and north-
erly down the Mackenzie to the Arctic circle; west through northern
New York, northern Illinois and Michigan to Minnesota.

IN NEW ENGLAND — Maine — Traveller Mountain " and Grand Lake;
Beal's Island on Washington county coast, Harrington, Orland and
Cape Rosier; Schoodic peninsula in Gouldsboro, a forest 30 ft. high;
Flag-staff; east branch of Penobscot; the Forks; Lake Umbagog; New
Hampshire — around the shores of Lake Umbagog, on points extending
into the lake rare: Welch mountains; Vermont — rare, but few trees
at each station; Monkton in Addison county; Fairfax, Franklin county;

WOOD — Light, soft, not strong, close-grained, clear pale brown or
rarely orange color with a thick nearly white sapwood; used for fuel
and occasionally for railroad ties and posts; occasionally manufactured
into lumber.

Jack Pine



Norway Pine.

Pinus resinosa Ait.

HABIT — A tree 50-75 ft. in height with a trunk diameter of 2-3 ft., in
Maine, reaching a height of over 100 ft.; trunk erect, continuous into the
crown with stout spreading branches often dependent and ascending at
their tips, more distinctly whorled than in the Pitch Pine, in young trees
clothing the trunk to the ground, forming a broadly pyramidal head
becoming irregularly round-topped with age. Foliage in long flexible
dark green tufts.

BARK — Reddish-brown, with shallow flat ridges, separating off in
irregular thin flaky scales.

TWIGS — Stout, light reddish-brown, not downy, roughened by decur-
rent scales subtending leaf clusters especially toward base of each year's

LEAVES — In clusters of 2, with long persistent sheaths, dark
green, shining, 3-6 inches long, slender, soft flexible, flattened on one
side, rounded on the other, with pointed tip. MICROSCOPIC SECTION
— showing 2 fibro-vascular bundles, peripheral resin-ducts, a
single layer of strengthening cells beneath the epidermis and around the
resin-ducts, stomata all around.

BUDS — Oblong to conical, pointed; scales reddish-brown,

FRUIT — Cones about 2 inches long, without stalks, ovate-conical,
when opened more or less spherical, making a right angle with the stem,
ripened cones remaining on the tree during winter. SCALES — thickened
at apex but without spines or prickers.

COMPARISONS — The Red Pine with two long needles in a cluster
should not be confused with our other native New England Pines. It
resembles, however, the Austrian Pine, but may be distinguished from
this species by its more slender flexible needles (see under Austrian

DISTRIBUTION — In poor soils; sandy plains, dry woods. Newfound-
land and New Brunswick, throughout Quebec and Ontario, to the
southern end of Lake Winnipeg; south to Pennsylvania; west through
Michigan and Wisconsin to Minnesota.

IN NEW ENGLAND — Maine — common, plains, Brunswick, (Cum-
berland county;) woods, Bristol (Lincoln county;) from Amherst
(westerji part of Hancock county) and Clifton (southeastern part of
Penobscot county) northward just east of the Penobscot river, the
predominant tree, generally on dry ridges and eskers, but in Green-
bush, and Passadunkeag growing abundantly on peat bogs with Black
Spruce; hillsides and lower mountains about Moosehead, scattered; New
Hampshire — ranges with the Pitch Pine as far north as the White
Mountains, but is less common, usually in groves of a few to several
hundred acres in extent; Vermont — less common than the White or
the Pitch Pine, but not rare; Massachusetts — still more local, in sta-
tions widely separated, single trees or small groups; Connecticut — rare
or local; Granby, Salisbury; Rhode Island — occasional.

"WOOD — Light, hard, very close-grained, pale red, with thin yellow
often nearly white sapwood; largelv used in the construction of bridges
and buildings, for piles, masts and spars. The bark is occasionally used
for tanning leather.

Red Pine


Black Pine.

Pinus Laricio, var. austriaca Endl.

HABIT — A tall tree reaching 60-80 ft. in height; trunk erect contin-
uous into the crown, branches in young trees regularly whorled, foliage
in rigid dark green tufts.

BARK — Grayish-brown, roughened with scaly ridges, reddish-brown

TWIGS — Stout, yellowish-brown, not downy, roughened by decurrent
scales subtending leaf-clusters especially toward base of each year's

LEAVES — In ciusters of 2, with relatively short persistent sheaths,
dark dullish green, 3-5 inches long, rigid, flattened on one side, rounded
on the other, sharp-pointed. MICROSCOPIC SECTION — showing
2 fibro-vascular bundles, resin-ducts located intermediate between
bundles and periphery, strengthening cells beneath the epidermis in
patches several layers thick also surrounding the resin-ducts and on
one side of the fibro-vascular bundles, stomata all around.

BUDS — Oblong-conical, pointed, sometimes covered with a white resin.

FRUIT — Cones 2i^-3 inches long, without stalks, ovate-conical, becom-
ing broadly ovate when opened, making about a right angle with the
stem. SCALES — thickened at apex, generally with a short dull spine.

COMPARISONS — The Austrian Pine resembles most closely the Red
Pine among our New England species. The stiff character of its
sharp-pointed leaves in distinction to the soft flexible leaves of the
Red Pine may be observed by striking the open hand against a tuft
of the needles. The winter twigs of the Austrian Pine are yellowish-
brown, those of the Red Pine are bright reddish-brown. The micro-
scopic sections of the leaves of the two species are very distinct.

DISTRIBUTION — A native of Europe but frequently cultivated in
this country as an ornamental tree and to some extent used in forest

WOOD — Light, soft, rich in turpentine and very durable. In Europe
the wood is used as a building timber and turpentine is obtained from
the tree.

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Austrian Pine



Scotch "Fir."
Piniis Sylvestris L.

HABIT — A tree up to 70 feet or occasionally 120 ft. in height; as
cultivated in this country in the open, often a low branching tree with
more or less pendant limbs and inclined trunk presenting a rather
straggling or unkempt appearance; frequently of more erect habit, espe-
cially in company with other trees.

BARK — Grayish-brown, scaly, upper part of trunk and branches
characteristically smoothish in appearance by flaking off of the outer
bark in thin papery light-reddish layered scales.

TWIGS — Of medium thickness, dull grayish-yellow, not downy, rough-
ened by scales subtending leaf clusters.

LEAVES — In clusters of 2, persistent, sheaths becoming lacerated,
dull bluish-green I'Vz-'^'Vz inches long, stiff, generally twisted, flat or
concave on one side, rounded on the other, pointed. MICROSCOPIC
SECTION — showing 2 fibro-vascular bundles, peripheral resin-ducts,
strengthening cells around resin-ducts, at one side of the bundles and
benath the epidermis, stomata all around.

BUDS — Oblong-conical, brown, often somewhat resinous-coated.

FRUIT — Cones li^-2i/^ inches long, short-stalked, grayish or reddish
brown, conic-oblong, generally appearing with the whorls of lateral
branches, usually pointing backward. SCALES — in young cones with a
short projection which when mature may persist as a short weak incon-
spicuous point or is deciduous, apex of scale thickened with a more or
less prominent four-sided boss often recurved especially toward base
of cone.

COMPARISONS — The Scotch Pine often improperly called Scotch "Fir"
may be distinguished from the other Pines native or cultivated in New
England by the bald reddish appearance of the upper part of trunk
and branches, the short bluish-green leaves and the backward-pointing

DISTRIBUTION — A European tree cultivated abroad in extensive for-
ests for its timber. In this country more or less planted as an orna-
mental tree, and sparingly escaped from cultivation. In Connecticut
rare or local as an escape; New London, Lyme, Southington, Bridgeport.

WOOD — Light, soft, reddish-brown, with thick light yellowish or red-
dish sapwood, easily split and durable, corresponding in importance
abroad to the White Pine in this country.








Scotch Pine



Tamarack, Hackmatack, Black Larch, "Juniper.

Larix laricina (Du Roi) Koch.

L. americana Michx.

HABIT — A tree 30-70 ft. in height, with a trunk diameter of 1-3 ft.,
It high altitudes reduced to 1-2 feet in height; trunk erect continuous
into the crown, branches irregular or indistinctly whorled, in young
age and when crowded and in swamps forming a narrow symmetrical
pyramidal head, in old age becoming broader and of irregular form.
The Larch is the only New England cone-bearing tree that sheds its
leaves in the fall; specimens in winter consequently are frequently
mistaken for dead trees.

BARK — On young trunks smooth, with age becoming roughened with
thin, close, reddish-brown, roundish scales.

TAVIGS — Slender, smooth, pale orange colored to reddish-brown with
short lateral wart-like branches, with resinous taste.

L.EAF-SCARS — Scattered on rapidly grown shoots, very numerous
and strongly decurrent, minute, triangular, with a single bundle-scar;
also on short wart-like branches, smaller and densely clustered.

BUDS — Scattered along last season's twigs, on older growth at the
ends of the short lateral branches, small, about 1 mm. long, spherical,
reddish, shining.

FRUIT — Ovate, oblong cones, about ^2-% inch long on short, stout
incurved stalks, persistent on trees throughout winter. SCALES — thin,
about a dozen or fewer in number.

COMPARISONS — The American Larch or Tamarack as it is more com-
monly called by woodsmen is hardly to be confused with any other
tree except the European Larch ILarix decichia Mill.; L. europaea DC.].
The European Larch is a species adapted to dryer situations than the
American form. It is readily distinguished by its stouter, yellower
twigs, larger cones, about 1 inch long, with numerous cone scales
(see lower twig in plate).

DISTRIBUTION — Low lands, shaded hillsides, borders of ponds; in
New England, preferring cold swamps; sometimes far up mountain
slopes. Labrador, Newfoundland and Nova Scotia, west to the Rocky
mountains; from the Rockies through British Columbia, northward along
the Yukon and Mackenzie systems, to the limit of tree growth beyond
the Arctic circle; south along the mountains to New Jersey and
Pennsylvania; west to Minnesota.

IN NEW ENGLAND — Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont — abundant,
filling swamps acres in extent, alone or associated with other trees,
mostly Black Spruce; growing depressed and scattered on Katahdin at
an altitude of 4,000 ft.; Massachusetts — rather common at least north-
ward; Connecticut — absent near the coast; rare in the eastern part of
the state; Union, Tolland; becoming occasional westward and frequent
in Litchfield county; Rhode Island — not reported.

WOOD — Very heavy, hard and strong, rather coarse-grained, very
durable in contact with soil, bright light red. with thin nearly white
sapwood; largely used for the upper knees of small vessels, fence posts,
telegraph poles, railroad ties, in cabinet making and for interior finish
of buildings.

Americax Larch
European Larch (lower twig only)


Cat, Skunk or Labrador Spruce.

Picea canadensis (Mill.) BSP.
P. alba Link.

HABIT — A tree 40-75 feet in height with a trunk diameter of 1-2 ft.;
trunk straight, slowly tapering, branches numerous, slightly ascending
or nearly horizontal, with numerous lateral, generally somewhat pendant
branchlets, spread in more or less well marked dense planes, forming a
broad-based pyramidal head; foliage bluish-green.

BARK-^Grayish to pale reddish-brown; on young trunks and branches
smoothish or slightly roughened becoming in a relatively late stage
flaky with small closely appressed scales.

TWIGS — Light, yellc w'sh-brown, smooth.

LiEAF-SCARS — Alternate, more than 2-ranked, on strongly projecting
decurrent ridges of the bark. BUNDLE-SCARS — single.

LEAVES — Bluish-green, 4-angled, 10-25 mm. long, blunt or sharp-
pointed, straight or incurved, without proper leaf-stalks with a strong
rank odor when bruised which is responsible for some of the common

BUDS — Ovate, blunt-pointed, light brown.

FRUIT — Oblong-cylindrical cones, li/^-2i/^ inches long, generally fall-
ing the first winter. SCALES — thin, flexible and elastic; margin rounded
or straight-topped, generally entire.

COMPARISONS— The White Spruce differs from our other native
Spruces, the Red and the Black, by its smooth twigs, less scaly bark,
rather longer and more nearly cylindrical cones and usually by the
rank odor of its leaves; from the Red Spruce further by its bluish-
green foliage. From the smooth-twigged Blue Spruce it is distinguished
by its smaller cones and less distinctly layered arrangement of branches.

DISTRIBUTION — Low, damp, but not wet woods; dry, sandy soils,
high, rocky slopes and exposed hilltops, often in scanty soil.
Newfoundland and Nova Scotia, through the provinces of Quebec and
Ontario to Manitoba and British Columbia, northward beyond all other
trees, within 20 miles of the Arctic sea; west through the northern
sections of the northern tier of states to the Rocky mountains. Some-
times cultivated as an ornamental tree.

IN NEW ENGLAND — Maine — frequent in sandy soils, often more com-
mon than the Red Spruce, as far south as the shores of Casco Bay; New
Hampshire — abundant around the shores of the Connecticut river, dis-
appearing southward at Fifteen-Mile falls; Vermont — restricted mainly
to the northern sections, more common in the northeast; Massachusetts
— occasional in the mountainous regions of Berkshire county; a few
trees in Hancock; as far south as Amherst, and Northampton, probably
about the southern limit of the species; Connecticut — rare, Waterford,
a few trees in a pasture as an escape from cultivation; Rhode Island —
not reported.

AVOOD — Light, soft, not strong, straight grained, light yellow, with
hardly distinguishable sapwood; manufactured into lumber in the
eastern provinces of Canada, and used in construction for the interior
finish of buildings and for paper pulp.

White Spruce



Picea rubra (Du Roi) Dietr.
P. nigra, var. rubra Engelm. ; P. ruhens Sarg.

HABIT — A tree 40-75 ft, in height with a trunk diameter of 1-2^
ft.; trunk straight, slowly tapering-; branches toward the middle of the
tree horizontal with upcurved tips; more or less strongly declined
toward the base forming a narrow conical head somewhat broader than
that of the Black Spruce; foliage dark yellowish-green.

BARK — Reddish-brown, flaky with thin scales.

TWIGS — Brown, more or less densely covered with short rusty to
black hairs,

LiEAF-SCARS — Alternate, more than 2-ranked, on strongly projecting
decurrent ridges of the bark. BUNDLE-SCARS — single.

LEAVES — Dark yellowish-green, 4-angled, 10-20 mm. long, blunt-
pointed, straight or curved, without proper leaf-stalks.

BUDS — Ovate, pointed, reddish-brown.

FRUIT — Ovate-oblong cones, l%-2 inches long, with short stalks not
at all or but slightly recurved, falling the first autumn or sometimes
remaining on the tree a year longer. SCALES — stiff, thin; margin
rounded, entire or slightly toothed.

COMPARISONS — The Red Spruce from its close resemblance to the
Black Spruce is considered by some authors as merely a variety of this
latter species (see Black Spruce under Comparisons). It differs from
the White and the Blue Spruce by its hairy twigs and yellowish-green
foliage and from the Norway Spruce by its shorter cones.

DISTRIBUTION — Cool, rich woods, well-drained valleys, slopes of
mountains not infrequently extending down to the borders of swamps.
Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia along the valley of the St.
Lawrence; south along the Alleghanies to Georgia, ascending to an alti-
tude of 4,500 feet in the Adirondacks, and 4,000-5,000 feet in West
Virginia; west through the northern tier of states to Minnesota.

IN NEW ENGLAND — Maine — throughout; most common towards the
coast and in the extreme north, thus forming a belt around the
central area, where it is often quite wanting except on cool or elevated
slopes; New Hampshire — throughout; the most abundant conifer of upper
Coos, the White Mountain region where it climbs to the alpine area,
and the higher parts of the Connecticut-Merrimac watershed; Vermont
— throughout; the common Spruce of the Green Mountains, often in
dense groves on rocky slopes with thin soil; Massachusetts — common in
the mountainous regions of Berkshire county and on uplands in the
northern sections, occasional southward; Connecticut — rare, Litchfield,
Canaan, Salisbury; Rhode Island — not reported.

W^OOD — Light, soft, close-grained, not strong, pale, slightly tinged
with red, with paler sapwood generally about 2 inches thick; largely
manufactured into lumber in the northeastern states and used for the
flooring and construction of houses, for the sounding-boards of musical
instruments and in the manufacture of paper pulp.



Red Spruce


Swamp, Bog, Water or Double Spruce.

Picea mariana (Mill.) BSP.
P. nigra Link ; P. hrevi folia Peck.

HABIT— In New England usually a small slender tree 10-30 ft. in
heig-ht with a trunk diameter of 5-8 inches, much larger northward and
westward, reduced to a shrub 2-5 ft. in height at high altitudes; with
relatively short, generally scattered branches, horizontal or usually
declined and curving upward at the ends; in open-grown trees, basal
branches frequently resting on the ground, taking root and sending up
shoots; crown an irregular open narrow-based cone; foliage bluish-

BARK — Grayish-brown, flaky, with thin scales.

TWIGS — Brown or yellowish-brown, more or less densely covered with
short rusty to black hairs.

LEAF-SCARS — Alternate, more than 2-ranked, on strongly projecting
decurrent ridges of the bark. BUNDLE-SCARS — single.

LEAVES — Bluish-green, 4-angled, 5-15 mm. long, blunt-pointed,
straight or slightly incurved, without proper leaf-stalks.

BUDS — Ovate, pointed, reddish-brown.

FRXTIT — Ovate cones, Vz to li^ inches long, becoming nearly spherical
when open, on short strongly recurved stalks generally remaining on
the tree for many years. SCALES^ — stiff, thin; margin rounded, uneven,
ragged, toothed or rarely entire.

COMPARISONS— The Black Spruce closely resembles the Red Spruce
from which it may be distinguished by its shorter, more nearly spherical
cones which generally remain for many years on the tree, by the more
ragged edging of the cone-scales, by the bluish-green color of its foliage
and by its habitat in swampy land. Extreme forms of the two species
Are sufficiently distinct but they are often difficult to distinguish even-
in the fruiting condition.

DISTRIBUTION — Swamps, sphagnum bogs, shores of rivers and ponds,
wet, rocky hillsides; not uncommon, especially northward, on dry up-
lands and mountain slopes. Labrador, Newfoundland, and Nova Scotia,
westward beyond the Rocky mountains, extending northward along the
tributaries of the Yukon in Alaska.

IN NEW ENGLAND — Maine — common throughout, covering extensive
areas almost to the exclusion of other trees in the central and northern
sections, occasional on the top of Katahdin (5,215 ft.); New Hampshire
and Vermont — common in sphagnum swamps of low and high altitudes;
the dwarf form, var. semiprostrata, occurs on the summit of Mt. Mans-
field; Massachusetts — frequent; Connecticut — swamps and sphagnum
bogs; rare or local over most of the state but absent near the coast;
usually a small stunted tree 5 to 15 ft. high but growing much larger
in the cool swamps of Litchfield county; in open bogs the trees often
produce cones when not more than 5 ft. high, and the cones persist on
the tree for many years; Rhode Island — North Scituate.

W^OOD — Light, soft, not strong, pale yellowish-white, with thin sap-
wood, probably rarely used outside of Manitoba and Saskatchewan ex-
cept in the manufacture of paper pulp. Spruce gum is gathered from
this and the other New England Spruces. Spruce beer is made by
boiling the branches of the Black and Red Spruces.

Black Spruce;


Colorado Blue Spruce, Silver Spruce.

Picea Menziesii Engelm.
P. Parry ana (Andre) Sarg. ; P. pungens Engelm.

HABIT — A tree reaching in Colorado a height of 100 ft. and a trunk
diameter of 2-3 ft., muchsmaller in cultivation; branches rigid, horizon-
tal with short, stout, stiff, lateral branchlets arranged in horizontal
planes giving a layered effect to the tree, especially in the young
stages; older trees becoming less regular with a thin, ragged, pyramidal
crown; foliage bluish-green to silvery-white or rarely dull green.

BARK — Grayish-brown, scaly, becoming deeply ridged toward the

TW^IGS — Bright yellowish to reddish-brown, smooth.

LEAF-SCARS — Alternate, more than 2-ranked, on strongly projecting
decurrent ridges of the bark. BUNDLE-SCARS — single.

LEAVES — Bluish-green to silvery-white or rarely dull green, 4-angled,
25-30 mm. long on sterile branches, often not over half as long on
fruiting branches, stout, stiff, sharp-pointed, incurved, without proper
leaf-stalks, with a pungent somewhat disagreeable odor when bruised,

BUDS — Ovate, blunt-pointed, light brown.

FRUIT — Oblong-cylindrical cones 2i/^ to 4 inches long, generally not
remaining on the tree after the second winter. SCALES — thin, distinctly
longer than broad with narrowed, flexible, ragged, blunt tips.

COMPARISONS — The Blue Spruce as cultivated as an ornamental tree
is strikingly distinct from other Spruces in its bluish-green or silvery
foliage and the horizontally layered arrangement of its branchlets. The
long stiff sharp-pointed needles and the narrowed elongated scales of
the large cones are further characteristic.

DISTRIBUTION — Along or near streams. Colorado and eastern Utah,
northward to the Wind river mountains of Wyoming. Often planted as
an ornamental tree in the eastern and northern states and also in
Europe, especially individuals with blue foliage.

W^OOD — Light, soft, close-grained, weak, pale brown, or often nearly
white with hardly distinguishable sapwood.

Blue Spruce



Picea Abies (L.) Karst.
P. excelsa Link.

HABIT — A large rapidly growing- tree, 50-100 ft. or more in height
with a trunk diameter up to 2 ft.; with spreading horizontal or ascending
branches and in mature trees generally with strongly drooping lateral
branchlets, forming a rather broad pyramidal head; foliage dark green.
The tree usually has a single erect trunk continuous into the crown
but although the tree photographed shows a double stem it is typical

Online LibraryAlbert Francis BlakesleeTrees in winter; their study, planting, care and identification → online text (page 17 of 31)