Chestnut Photos by Randy Brown  

TOPIC: American Chestnut

== 1 of 2 ==
Date: Mon, Jul 21 2008 7:35 pm
From: Randy Brown

Here's some of my best chestnut photos

Back in the 90's there was a organization called the 'American
Chestnut Council' that propagated nuts from mature trees growing in
the upper reaches of the 'thumb' of Michigan (centered around
Cadillac). I was able to visit one of the big groves just as the
blight was hitting (the 'Magnificent 7', the second biggest was
already dead). Here's the picture of the best one:

I also have some of their seedlings planted in Northwest ohio (wet
clay soil, limestone bedrock-not so bright). Two have survived, but
only one is growing properly and flowered for the first time last
year. Three years ago there were three. We had a very dry summer (the
driest since 1988) and the seedling exposed to southwest wind was
killed. The larger one (4" dia at the base 11' tall) looked fine but
the top branch died back the next year. In response to this damage,
the tree sent a coppiced from it's baseand filled the hole in it's
crown in 2 seasons. I suppose the coppice will take over as the
terminal leader. I haven't seen what it's done yet this year.
The third one is just kinda sitting in limbo, growing about 2"-3" per

Here's the big Cook forest Chestnut that Carl Harting showed me a
couple of years ago.  (I checked this tree for viable nuts in Oct '07, but found only a few
empty burrs. I few judicious swings with chainsaw at its competitors might fix that, but Dale might
not approve)

And here's a picture of a skinny one we stumbled on while thrashing
through the brush..

Here's a small one growing ~1/2 down the river trail downhill from the
firetower. There are lot
of sapling to small tree sized-sized sprouts growing on this slope,
but this is the biggest one (~6" dbh).

This one is at Holden Arboretum under heavy attack from the blight. I
kinda got the idea the trees just kinda dropped dead like Elm, but not
so. Rather it looks like the trees fight losing battle against the
cancers over the course of several years. You can see the partial
callousing. I'd be interested to know when the cancers actually make
their growth because it looks episodic. Winter/spring perhaps?

== 2 of 2 ==
Date: Mon, Jul 21 2008 9:05 pm
From: James Parton


Great photos. It is so nice to see some chestnuts with mature bark.