Albert Francis Blakeslee.

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

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roundish, rather inconspicuous stipule-scars at either side of the leaf-
scar. BUNDLE-SCARS — 3.

BUDS — Terminal bud absent; lateral buds minute, about 3 mm. or
often less in length, ovate, blunt, flattened and appressed against
twig; smoothish or somewhat hairy at base, with dense pale-rusty hairs
within showing through at apex. BUD-SCALES — not easily distin-
guished, about 2 visible, reddish-brown to light reddish, breaking away
at the tip.

FRUIT — A large, firm, fleshy, downy pome.

COMPARISONS — The twigs and buds of the Quince resemble some-
what those of the Apple but the twigs are much more slender and
the buds show a distinctive tuft of rusty hairs. The bushy habit of
growth further will distinguish the Quince from the other cultivated
fruit trees.

DISTRIBUTION — A tree native of Europe, cultivated for the fruit and
escaped to a slight extent in some localities.

W'OOD — The wood is of no commercial importance. The fruit is
valued for preserving. The raw fruit and mucilaginous seed are used
In domestic medicinal practice.



Service Berry, Shadblow, Juneberry.

Amelanchier canadensis (L.) Medic.

HABIT — A shrub or small tree 10-25 ft. in height with a trunk
diameter of 6-10 inches, sometimes reaching a height of 40 ft. with a
trunk diameter of li^ ft.; of variable habit, at times a shrub with many
stems in a clump (see plate, picture at right) or again a symmetrical
tree with a single trunk with many small limbs and fine branchlets
forming an oblong or rather wide-spreading round-topped head (see

BARK — Essentially smooth, grayish-brown, older trunks with narrow
longitudinal fissures separating off shallow flat ridges which are some-
what scaly at base of trunk; younger trunks and branches smooth, often
characteristically streaked with darker longitudinal lines (see plate).

TWIGS — Slender, grayish, olive-green to reddish-brown often covered
with a gray skin, generally smooth, with slight taste of bitter almonds.
LiENTICELS — scattered or numerous, pale, minute dots. PITH —
greenish with irregular edges.

LiEAF-SCARS — Alternate, 2-ranked or at times appearing more than
2-ranked, a raised very narrow flattened V-shaped line swollen at the
bundle-scars, often with short somewhat decurrent ridges at outer
edges. STIPULE-SCARS — absent. BUNDLE-SCARS — 3, rather large.

BUDS — Terminal buds present, long, narrow, 7-12 mm. long and 3-4
times as long as broad, narrowly ovate to conical, sharp-pointed, green-
ish-yellowish more or less tinged with reddish-purple, smooth or with
white silky hairs at apex and edges of scales, mostly appressed; lateral
buds on rapidly grown shoots normal, on slowly grown spurs, undevel-
oped or rudimentary; generally a small lateral bud just below terminal
bud. BUD-SCALES — increasing from below vipward, the two lowest
about Vs length of the bud, more or less keeled and 3-nerved, dark-
margined and with a single short dark spiny tip, lower scales often 3-
tipped, edges from slightly downy on outermost scales to densely silky-
hairy on inner scales; on terminal buds about 5 scales visible, more or
less imperfectly 2-ranked; lateral buds on vigorous shoots often with
pair of extra lateral scales basally united giving short-stalked appear-
ance to bud.

FRUIT — Berry-like, sometimes if infected by a rust fungus remaining
dried on the tree through the winter.

COMPARISONS — The long narrow buds of the Shad Bush bear a super-
ficial resemblance to those of the Beech. The Beech buds, however, are
divergent, narrower, with 10-20 scales regularly arranged in four
rows and have stipule-scars nearly encircling the twig. The Shad
Bush is subject to the attacks of a fungus [Dimerosporium ColUnsiU
which blackens the leaves and causes a profuse branching at the
point of infection. The "witches' brooms" thus formed with the
persistentent blackened leaves often enables the tree to be recognized at
a distance. It is probable that the Shad Bush, as here described in-
cludes a number of forms or distinct species.

DISTRIBUTION — Dry, open woods, hillsides. Newfoundland and Nova
Scotia to Lake Superior; south to the Gulf of Mexico; west to Minne-
sota, Kansas, and Louisiana.

IN NEW ENGLAND — Throughout.

WOOD — Heavy, exceedingly hard, strong, close-grained, dark brown
often tinged with red, with thick lighter colored sapwood of 40-50
layers of annual growth; occasionally used for the handles of tools and
other small implements; under the name of "Lancewood" it is used in
the manufacture of fish rods.




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Shad Bush


Thorns, Haws, Thorn Apples, White Thorns.

Crataegus L.

NOTE — The Hawthorns form one of the most perplexing genera
among- flowering plants. Some 600 species have been described and
Sargent in his Manual gives descriptions of 132 tree-like forms for
North America. The distinctions used are based largely upon flower and
fruit characters. They are at best often difl^cult of application and
entirely unavailable in the winter. It seems, therefore, most advisable
to give a description which will hold good for the whole group rather
than a detailed account of any single species. The twig photographed
was taken from the Cockspur Thorn [Crataegus Crus-galli L..]; the habit
photograph from an undetermined specimen belonging to the
Pruinosa group growing in a deserted pasture,

HABIT — Generally low wide spreading trees or shrubs. ,

BARK — Generally dark, scaly.

TWIGS — Rigid, round in section, more or less zigzag, rarely unarmed,
generally armed with axillary thorns which are almost always un-
branched — not infrequently branched when arising from the trunk and
larger branches — generally similar in color to branches from which they
grow; thorns generally absent from many of the nodes. LENTICELS —
oblong, generally pale.

LEAF-SCARS — Alternate, more than 2-ranked, small, narrow, cres-
cent-shaped, slightly raised. STIPULE-SCARS — absent. BUNDLE-

BUDS — Small, spherical or nearly so; terminal bud generally present,
scarcely larger than lateral buds; a lateral accessory bud on each side
of the axillary thorn, frequently only one of the two developed. BUD-
SCALES — numerous, overlapping, thick, rounded, blunt, bright chestnut
brown, shining.

FRUIT — Berry-like, botanically a small drupe-like pome with 1-5

COMPARISONS — The Hawthorns may be distinguished from other
genera by the unbranched axillary thorns usually present on their
twigs, and by the bright, shining, chestnut brown, generally spherical
buds. The thorns of the Honey Locust are branched and situated some
distance above the axillary buds. The Osage Orange [Madura pomifera
(Raf.) Schneider], sometimes grown in hedges, has unbranched thorns
generally present at all the nodes, decreasing regularly, toward the
tip of the greenish-gray twigs, without terminal buds but with buds
lateral to the thorns and in the broad leaf-scar a single more or
less ring-shaped bundle-scar or a number of nearly confluent bundle-

DISTRIBUTION — The Hawthorns are most abundant in eastern North
America occurring here from Newfoundland to the mountains of north-
ern Mexico. A few species occur in the Rocky mountains and Pacfiic
coast regions and in China, Japan, Siberia, central and southern Asia
and in Europe.

AVOOD — Heavy, hard, tough, close-grained, reddish-brown, with thick
lighter colored usually pale sapwood; useful for the handles of tools,
mallets and other small articles.




Rum, Cabinet or Black Cherry.

Prunus serotina Ehrh.

Padus serotina (Ehrh.) Agardh.

HABIT — A medium sized tree 30-50 ft. in height with a trunk diameter
N^. from 8 or 10 inches to 2 feet, becoming much larger in the

-V^ middle and southern states; branches spreading often more or less
zigzag forming an irregular oblong head.

BARK — On young trunks and branches smooth reddish-brown with
conspicuous oblong whitish horizontal lenticels, easly peeled off in thin
dark papery layers exposing the bright green bark below, becoming
with age very much roughened by irregular, close, dark, scaly plates
with upturned edges.

TW^IGS — Rather slender, smooth, reddish-brown, more or less covered
with a grayish skin easily rubbed off; crushed twigs with odor and taste
of bitter almonds. LENTICELS — numerous, pale, minute, rounded dots,
becoming horizontally elongated and more conspicuous on later growth.
PITH — whitish or brownish.

L.EAF-SCARS — Alternate, more than 2-ranked, small, semi-oval to
inversely triangular, raised. STIPULE-SCARS — inconspicuous or appar-
ently absent. BUNDLE-SCARS — 3, often inconspicuous.

BUDS — Medium sized, ovate, blunt to sharp-pointed, about 4 mm.
long, smooth, bright reddish-brown, divergent or sometimes somewhat
flattened and appressed; terminal bud slightly larger than lateral buds.
BUD-SCALES — about 4 visible, broadly ovate, more or less rounded
and keeled on the back, of nearly uniform color or with darker edges,
sometimes partially covered with a grayish skin, similar to that usual on
the twigs.

FRUIT — A drupe about the size of a pea, ripening in summer in
drooping elongated clusters.

C03IPARIS0IVS — The Wild Black Cherry in its young growth
resembles the Choke Cherry but grows to be a good sized tree and
develops a very rough scaly bark. Further the lenticels tend to be
whitish and elongate horizontally with age, the buds are smaller and
redder and their scales are not white-margined. From the cultivated
Sweet and Sour Cherries the Black Cherry is distinguished by absence
of fruiting spurs, by smaller buds and by the character of its bark.>

DISTRIBUTION — In all sorts of soils and exposures; open places and
rich woods. Nova Scotia to Lake Superior; south to Florida; west to
North Dakota, Kansas, and Texas, extending through Mexico, along the
Pacific coast of Central America to Peru.

IN NEW ENGLAND — Maine — not reported north of Oldtown (Penob-
scot county), frequent throughout the other New England states.

WOOD — Light, strong, rather hard, close straight-grained, with a
satiny surface, light brown or red, with thin yellow sapwood of 10-12
layers of annual growth; largely used in cabinet-making and the
interior finish of houses. The bark, especially that of the branches and
roots, yields hydrocyanic acid used in medicine as a tonic and sedative.
The ripe fruit is used to flavor alcoholic liquors whence one of the
common names.

Wild Black Cjikkry



Prunus virginiana L.

Padus virginiana (L.) Roemer.

HABIT — Generally a tall shrub or a small tree rarely reaching 20-30
ft. in height with a trunk diameter of 6-8 inches.

BARK — Dull grayish-brown, smoothish but slightly roughened with
raised buff-orange rounded dots formed by the enlarged lenticels, not
becoming rough-scaly with age; on young trunks and branches easily
peeled off in thin, dark papery layers exposing the bright green bark

TlrVIGS — Slender to rather stout, averaging stouter than those of the
Wild Black Cherry, smooth, reddish to grayish-brown, without grayish
skin easily rubbed off, crushed twigs with a rank odor and taste in
addition to that of bitter almonds. LENTICELS — numerous, rather con-
spicuous, buff-orange dots, slightly elongated longitudinally the first
year and not becoming distinctly elongated horizontally on later
growth. PITH — of recent growth white.

LEAF-SCARS — Alternate, more than 2-ranked, elliptical, raised.
STIPULE-SCARS — inconspicuous or absent. BUNDLE-SCARS — 3, fre-
quently sunken.

BUDS — Rather large, narrow, ovate to conical, about 6 mm. or more
long, smooth, pale brown, sharp-pointed, generally divergent with more
or less strongly curved apex; terminal bud frequently slightly smaller
than lateral buds. BUD-SCALES — a half dozen or more scales visible,
broadly ovate, more or less rounded and keeled on the back with thin

FRUIT— A drupe about the size of a pea, ripening in summer in droop-
ing elongated clusters.

COMPARISONS — The Choke Cherry may be distinguished from the
Wild Black Cherry with which it is frequently confused by its smaller
size, smoothish bark even in old age, its buff colored lenticels which
do not elongate horizontally, the rank odor of its twigs and by its
larger and paler buds with whitsh-margined bud-scales. From the
cultivated Sweet and Sour Cherries the Choke Cherry is distinguished
by the absence of short fruit spurs and by its gray-margined bud-scales.
The lower twig in the plate is infected by a fungus disease — Black Knot
(Plowrightia morbosaj — which occurs less abundantly upon the Wild
Black and Wild Red Cherries and also upon our cultivated Cherries as
well as upon the Plums.

DISTRIBUTION — In varying soils; along river banks, on dry plains, in
woods, common along walls and often in thickets. Prom Newfoundland
across the continent, as far north on the Mackenzie river as 62 degrees;
south to Georgia; west to Minnesota and Texas.

IN NEW ENGLAND — Common throughout; at an altitude of 4,500 feet
upon Mt. Katahdin. In Connecticut, rare near the coast in the south-
eastern part of the state but frequent or common elsewhere.

WOOD — Hard, close-grained, weak, light brown; of insufficient size
to be of value commercially.

Choke Cherry



Bird, Fire, Pin or Pigeon Cherry

Prunus pennsylvanica L. f.

HABIT — A shrub or small tree generally under 30 ft. in height with
trunk diameter of 8-10 inches; trunk erect generally continuous into
crown with slender branches arising at a rather sharp angle, forming a
rather narrow oblong open head. The trees growing in the open about
otorrs have in general a narrower outline than the tree photographed.

BARK — Bright reddish-brown, for the most part smooth, often slight-
ly peeling in transverse strips especially toward the base of the trunk
and in old trees somewhat roughened; inner bark on young branches
bright green. LENTICELS — conspicuous, horizontally elongated, lens-
shaped, orange colored and powdery on the surface.

TWIGS — Slender, generally less than 2 mm. thick, often less than
1.5 mm. thick, smooth, bright red and shining, more or less covered with
a gray skin easily rubbed off; bitter aromatic. LENTICELS — scattered,
pale to bright orange colored, becoming slightly elongated horizontally
and more conspicuous on older growth. PITH — brown, narrow.

L.EAF-SCARS — Alternate, more than 2-ranked, semi-oval, raised.
STIPULE-SCARS — back of leaf-scars, generally indistinct or absent.
BUNDLE-SCARS — 3, the central larger one often alone distinct.

BUDS — Minute, generally under 3 mm. long, blunt-pointed, ovate,
reddish-brown, smooth, often partially covered with a grayish skin,
divergent, on rapidly grown shoots characteristically clustered at the
tips as well as scattered, with the terminal bud present but generally
smaller than those in the cluster around it; also clustered buds at ends
of short fruiting spurs; collateral accessory buds sometimes present.
BUD-SCALES — ovate, often notched and short-pointed, not readily dis-
tinguished as separate scales with the naked eye.

FRUIT^ — A drupe about the size of a pea, ripening in summer in short
clusters or with stalks arising from a common point on the stem,

COMPARISONS — The appearance of the bark and the taste of the
twigs show the Wild Red Cherry to belong to the Cherry group. It
differs from the other cherries in its very slender twigs and small buds
which are constantly clustered at the tips even of rapidly grown shoots.
The Wild Black Cherry when tree-like is further distinguished by its
scaly bark. The powdery bright reddish-orange lenticels on young
and even old trunks form a striking character but a similar color
may occur in the lenticels of the other Cherries especially if the outer
surface is rubbed off.

DISTRIBUTION — Roadsides, clearings, burnt lands, hill slopes, occa-
sional in rather low grounds. From Labrador to the Rocky mountains,
through British Columbia to the Coast Range; south to North Carolina;
west to Minnesota and Missouri.

IN NEW ENGLAND — Throughout; very common in the northern
portions, as high up as 4,500 ft. upon Katahdin, less common southward
and near the seacoast.

WOOD — Light, soft, close-grained, light brown, with thin yellow sap-
wood of little commercial importance.

Wild Eed Cherry


Mazzard Cherry, European Bird Cherry.

Prunus avium L.

HABIT — A good sized tree reaching 50-75 ft. in height with a trunk
diameter of 2-3 ft.; trunk erect continuous into the crown with slender
ascending branches forming a narrow pyramidal head; with age becom-
ng broad-spreading.

BARK — Characteristically reddish-brown with horizontally elongated
buff colored lenticels, tardily peeling off in transverse strips which
curl back and expose the lighter bark below which on very old trunks
may be roughened by scaly ridges; on young branches bark easily
peeled off in a thin dark papery layer exposing the bright green bark

TW^IGS — Stout, bright reddish-brown, smooth and shining, more or
less covered with a grayish skin easily rubbed off; crushed twigs with
bitter taste. In addition to long rapidly grown shoots, stubby slowly
grown fruit spurs with terminally clustered buds are abundant. LEN-
TICELS — rather numerous, pale, becoming horizontally elongated.
PITH — brown.

LiEAP-SCARS — Alternate, more than 2-ranked, rather broad, semi-
oval to inversely triangular, raised. STIPULE-SCARS — slightly behind
leaf-scars, oblique, often indistinct or absent. BUNDLE-SCARS — 3.

BUDS — Clustered at ends of fruiting spurs or scattered on rapidly
grown shoots; terminal bud scarcely larger than lateral buds;
lateral buds divergent, stout, ovate, pointed, constricted at base, about
7 mm. long, reddish-brown, smooth, often partially covered with a
grayish skin. BUD-SCALES — broadly ovate, with edges often lighter
colored and more or less frayed and ragged.

FRl'IT — A drupe with edible flesh, generally sweet though in some
varieties tart, with hard stone or pit enclosing the seed, ripening in
summer, with stalks generally several " in a cluster arising from a
common point on the stem,

COMPARISONS — The two types of cultivated cherries, the Sweet and
the Sour, are to be distinguished chiefly by habit of growth and relative
size of twigs and buds, the Sweet Cherry having a pyramidal outline
generally with a central leader and with relatively stout twigs and
larger buds. These differences are well shown in the plates. (See
Comparisons under Sour Cherry.)

DISTRIBUTION — A native of Europe, in this country cultivated for
5ts fruit in several improved varieties such as the Black Tartarian,
May Duke, Windsor, Napoleon, etc., and in some places escaped from

"WOOD — Strong, rather soft, close-grained, yellowish-red, taking a
fine polish; largely used in Europe for fine furniture, inside finishing
and for musical and other instruments.

1 '

Sweet Cherry



Pie or Morello Cherry.

Prunus Cerasus L.

HABIT — A small tree 20-30 ft. or less in height with a trunk diameter
of 10 or 12 inches; with stout spreading branches and more or less
drooping- branchlets forming a broad, low, rounded head.

BARK — Similar to that of the Sweet Cherry, but the outer smooth
bark sooner peeling back and exposing the roughened inner bark.

TWIGS — Slender, otherwise resembling twigs of Sweet Cherry.

LEAF-SCARS— Similar to those of the Sweet Cherry.

BUDS — Similar to those of the Sweet Cherry but smaller and appa-
rently more frequently clustered toward the ends of long shoots.
Compare the twig photographs of the two species.

FRUIT — Similar to that of Sweet Cherry but flesh tart.

COMPARISONS — The Sour Cherry differs from the Sweet Cherry in its
spreading habit of growth, its more slender twigs and smaller buds.
Compare plates of the two species. From the native Wild Black and
Choke Cherries the cultivated Sweet and Sour Cherries are distinguished
by the short fruit spurs; from the Wild Red Cherry by their stouter
twigs and buds and absence of a bud cluster at the tip of long shoots,

DISTRIBUTION — A native of Europe, in this country cultivated for its
fruit in several improved varieties such as the Amarelles, Early Rich-
mond, Montmorency, etc., and the Morellos, Louis Philippe, etc., and in
some places escaped from cultivation.

"WOOD — Similar in appearance and uses to that of the Sweet Cherry
from which it is not distinguished by wood workers.

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Sour Cuerrt


Red, Horse or Wild Plum.

Prunus nigra Ait.
P. americana, var. nigra Waugh

HABIT — A shrub or small tree 20-25 ft. in height with a trunk
diameter of 5-8 inches; with contorted branches and more or less zigzag
branchlets forming a low spreading head. It tends to sucker freely
forming low thickets.

BARK — On young trunks and branches dark brown with prominent
raised lenticels which are horizontally slightly elongated; at first
smooth but soon splitting and curling back in thick grayish-brown
layered plates exposing the rough scaly bark below.

TW^IGS — Slender, smooth, reddish-brown, often more or less covered
with a grayish skin, bitter aromatic, lateral spiny spurs generally
present. LENTICELS — scattered, large and rather conspicuous pale

LEAP-SCARS — Alternate, more than 2-ranked, broadly crescent-
shaped. STIPULE-SCARS— indistinct or absent. BUNDLE-SCARS —
3, often inconspicuous.

BUDS — Terminal bud absent, lateral buds about 4-8 mm. long, conical,
narrow-pointed, grayish-brown; collateral buds sometimes present.
BUD-SCALES — triangular, pale and thin on the margins, generally hairy
at the apex.

FRlTiT — A smooth-skinned drupe with smooth stone.

COMPARISONS — The Plums are distinguished from the other members
of the genus Prunus by the absence of a terminal bud. The Canada
Plum so far as one can judge from the material investigated is
distinguishable by its larger buds from the American Plum, of which
it is considered by some only as a variety.

DISTRIBUTION — Native along streams and in thickets, often spon-
taneous around dwellings and along fences. From Newfoundland
through the valley of the St. Lawrence to Lake Manitoba; rare south
of New England; west to Wisconsin. Has given rise to some valuable
fruit-bearing varieties in cultivation.

IN NEW ENGLAND — Maine — abundant in the northern sections and
common throughout; New Hampshire and Vermont — frequent, especially
in the northern sections; Massachusetts — occasional; Connecticut — rare,
Norfolk, a few trees about an abandoned garden; Oxford; Rhode Island —
not reported.

WOOD — Heavy, hard, strong, close-grained, rich, bright reddish-
brown with thin lighter colored sapwood.

Canada Pluii



NOTE — The Cultivated Plums are either improved forms of originally
wild species or have been derived by hybridization from a number of
such forms. The types most cultivated in the United States are the
American (derived from Prunus americana), the European (derived
from Prunus domestica) and the Japanese (derived from Prunus
triflora). Although the varieties of a given type differ considerably so
that without further study it does not seem desirable to try to offer
a detailed winter classification of the cultivated plums, still the general
characteristics of the unmixed types are recognizable in winter.
Certain varieties, the Gold, the Lombard and the Red June have been
chosen for the photographs to illustrate respectively the American, the
European and the Japanese types.


Prunus americana Marsh.
Illustrations on page 375.

The American cultivated type of Plum has very slender grayish-
brown twigs and branches which have a decidedly drooping habit of
growth. The bark is brown; on young trunks and branches smooth,
shining, with prominent, light-colored, horizontally elongated lenticels

Online LibraryAlbert Francis BlakesleeTrees in winter; their study, planting, care and identification → online text (page 26 of 31)