Growing Trees  

TOPIC: Growing Trees a Favorite Hobby

== 1 of 7 ==
Date: Wed, Feb 20 2008 12:59 pm
From: Larry

ENTS, I've been growing trees for years I just havn't talked about
it much. I would estimate that I did around 200 so far. Some of the
species I've been able to grow from acorn or seed are- Black Walnut,
Mocker Nut Hickory, Pignut Hickory, Shagbark Hickory, Shellbark
Hickory, White Oak, Southern Red Oak, Northern Red Oak, Cherrybark Red
Oak, Shumard Red Oak, Willow Oak, Post Oak, White Oak, Swamp Chestnut
Oak, Chestnut Oak, Overcup Oak, Persimmon, Locust, etc. Most of these
trees are growing on my old property, and some on friends properties.
I give alot of them away, I just enjoy growing things, and I want to
share my good fortune. When I retire I'll have much more time for this
kind of stuff. 

California White Oaks and MS Swamp Chestnut Oaks

 Louisiana Live Oaks and MS White Oaks

This year I have 4 White Oaks from Califorina, 4
National Champion Live Oaks from Louisiana, 8 Swamp Chestnut Oaks from
Pascagoula Swamp, 6 White Oaks from Northern Ms., and 1 Bur Oak from
Oklahoma growing. I'll post some photos on the file page for anyone
interested! BTW my oldest trees are 12 years old now!

== 2 of 7 ==
Date: Wed, Feb 20 2008 2:12 pm


I would be interested in any observations you'd care to share about the challenges that are associated with growing the various species you listed. What are some of the conditions you must create?


== 3 of 7 ==
Date: Wed, Feb 20 2008 4:45 pm
From: Gary Smith


Off and on over the years, I have germinated and grown some trees
also, but not on your scale. Years ago, I germinated about 20
baldcypress seeds in a very big container, and transplanted them bare-
root the following winter. They are now part of a grove of about 40
planted cypress trees along a creek bottom, and doing well.

A shumard oak I grew from a planted acorn back in 1986 has grown very
well and is now over 1ft dbh and 50+ ft high.

I have also done a bit of transplanting of small seedlings out of the
woods, again in a bare-root fashion, which I prefer. A yellow poplar,
aka tulip tree, which I transplanted back in the '80s, has really done

Sourwood is another tree that I've transplanted, though I did that one
ball and burlap. Likewise with Southern magnolias.


== 4 of 7 ==
Date: Wed, Feb 20 2008 4:45 pm
From: Larry

Bob, What I did was recreate the Forest floor for the acorns to
root. Rich soil, ample moisture, leaf coverage and lots of sunshine.
I built some 2x4 framed beds, with plywood bottoms. I drilled holes in
the bottoms, for water drainage, filled them with rich soil, placed
the acorns firmly into the soil, then covered them with leaf matter.
I made a 2x4 screened frame for a cover placing it on top of the bed
to keep out the squirrels. As the trees grew taller I would just and
another 2x4 frame. The acorns stay dorment all winter then when spring
warmth comes they root and sprout just like in the Forest. My success
rate is around 90%, I also grow them in plastic pots as illustrated in
the photos I posted on the file page. Its something anyone can do and
is a great way to get children interested in trees! The next time I
do this I'll use 2x6's instead of 2x4's for the growth. All lumber I
used was treated and lasted for about 10 years. I could grow 50 at a
time! Larry

== 5 of 7 ==
Date: Wed, Feb 20 2008 4:51 pm
From: Larry

Gary, Awesome! Isn't growing trees so cool! Knowing that when you
look at your tree, its like part of you, ( know what I mean)! I did a
couple cypress cones to! Larry

== 6 of 7 ==
Date: Wed, Feb 20 2008 5:27 pm

Larry and Gary,

Very interesting topic. I hope others out there with experience in growing trees will come forward and share their knowledge with their fellow and lady Ents. Growing trees from seed is a topic that we almost never discuss, but one of great practical significance to those who may want to propogate species on a small scale and get practical suggestions. I've often thought of having a line up of different species of oaks. Maybe that will plant the idea in my noodle to try for 100 years just to see the oaks grow.

One oak species that has always interested me is the Shumard Oak. I'm unsure of why the species fascinates me - maybe because mature Shumards can have such gorgeous shapes. I feel cheated here in New England not to have the Shumard growing naturally. It can certainly take the cold, given that it makes it to Michigan. But then New England has been screwed in other oaky ways. Bur Oak and Nutall are examples. Although the distribution maps show Bur oak in western Massachusetts, try to find one.


== 7 of 7 ==
Date: Wed, Feb 20 2008 7:26 pm
From: Gary Smith


Maybe you aren't too cheated, I'm guessing you likely have a beautiful
oak for fall color that we don't see too much of down here. I'm
speaking of scarlet oak...they are common towards the mid-South, but
infrequent in the lower South. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm
thinking they are fairly common up north.

You are right about the Shumard oak. It can become a very large oak
with a shape conveying the image of great strength. Quite often the
foliage can turn a crimson red in the fall. Seems to me both the
shumard and nuttall are popular in the nursery trade down here. The
nuttall is also popular with for lowland wildlife plantings as they
typically start producing acorns early.


TOPIC: Growing Trees a Favorite Hobby

== 1 of 17 ==
Date: Thurs, Feb 21 2008 3:08 am
From: Beth Koebel


Both the Shumard and Nutall oaks don't quite reach our
farm in Washington County. The Shumard are about 30
miles south and the Nutall is about 60 miles south.
Now that doesn't mean that they are not growing on our
farm. With a little help from yours truely there are
two Shumards and one Nutall cultivar.


== 2 of 17 ==
Date: Thurs, Feb 21 2008 3:47 am
From: pabigtrees

Larry, Beth, Gary, Bob

I love growing trees too. I usually start with bare root stock, but I
have been experimenting with growing Hickory from seed. Hickory is
absent from the commercial market because of the taproot, but I am
having success with a fiber pot from Rootmaker. I am fortunate for
this hobby to be part of my job. Below are the trees currently in my
nursery. The Rootmaker pots, ,I use don't allow
the roots to circle. You get a nice fibrous root system, even with
tap rooted trees. In a five gallon rootmaker pot, you can grow a tree
to 1" caliper. There is little to no transplant shock too. I use a
Fafard nursery mix that is mostly bark with a little peat. The plants
love it. One of the best places to get oddball native plants is
Woodlanders in Aiken SC. they are mail order
and retail. This does not include the hundreds of trees we have
planted out in the gardens. I hope to live a long life so I can see
the trees mature. That is the neat part about planting trees, you
really don't do it for yourself. People that aren't even born yet
will be the ones to appreciate the trees the most.

QTY Nursery Inventory of Our Lady of Angels

2 Acer grandidentatum Big tooth maple
5 Acer saccarinum 'Laciniatum Weiri' Cutleaved Silver Maple
3 Acer spicatum Mountain maple
Aesculus sylvatica Painted buckeye
3 Amelanchier nantucketensis Nantucket juneberry
1 Betula nigra 'Summer Cascades' River birch #2
5 Carya glabra Pignut hickory
3 Carya illinoisensis Pecan
1 Carya lacinosa Shellbark hickory
1 Castenea pumila Allegheny chinkapin
5 Corylus americana Hazelnut
2 Corylus cornuta Beaked hazelnut
2 Cotinus obovatus American smokebush
1 Crataegus brachyacantha Blueberry hawthorn
1 Crataegus opaca Riverflat hawthorn
1 Crateagus marshallii Parsely leaved hawthorne
3 Fragaria virginiana Virginia strawberry
9 Gleditsia triancanthos Honey locust
1 Gymnocladus dioicus Kentucky coffee tree
1 Halesia diptera Two winged silverbell
1 Halesia diptera var. magniflora Two winged silverbell
1 Halesia monticola 'Arnold Pink' Mountain silverbell
1 Ilex amelanchier Swamp Holly (male)
1 Ilex amelanchier Swamp Holly (female)
3 Ilex opaca 'Fallaw" American holly, yellow fruit
1 Ilex vomitoria 'Virginia Dare' Yaupon holly
1 Illicium floridanum f. album Florida anise-tree
1 Juniperus communis Common juniper
1 Leitneria floridana Florida corkwood
1 Leucothoe racemosa Sweetbells
1 Magnolia ashei x macrophylla Magnolia hybrid
1 Magnolia fraseri Fraser magnolia
1 Magnolia pyramidata Pyramid magnolia
1 Myrica cerifera var. pumila Dwarf bayberry
5 Nyssa sylvatica Black gum
3 Picea sitchensis Sitka spruce
1 Platanus occidentalis Sycamore
5 Prunus americana American plum
1 Prunus umbellata Flatwoods plum
1 Quercus arkansana Arkansas oak
1 Quercus dentata 'C. F. Miller' Japanese oak
5 Quercus ellipsoidalis Northern pin oak
1 Quercus falcata var. pagodafolia Cherrybark oak
2 Quercus gambelii Rocky mountain white oak
1 Quercus gravesii Chisos red oak
1 Quercus hemisphaerica Laurel oak
1 Quercus muehlenbergii (Prinoides) Chinquapin oak
1 Quercus nuttallii Nuttall oak
1 Quercus oglethorpensis Oglethorpe oak
1 Quercus prinoides (Muehlenbergii) Chinquapin oak
1 Quercus shumardii Shumard oak
3 Quercus stellata Post oak
1 Quercus velutina Black Oak
3 Quercus velutina Black Oak
1 Quercus virginiana Live oak
3 Rhododendron canescens Piedmont azalea
1 Rhododendron spp pink deciduous
1 Rhododendron vaseyi Pinkshell azalea
1 Sorbus decora Showy mountain ash
2 Styrax americanus American snowbell
1 Styrax grandifolia Bigleaf snowbell
1 Taxodium distichum Bald cypress
1 Taxodium distichum 'Peve Minaret' Dwarf bald cypress
2 Taxodium mucronatum Mexican baldcypress
1 Taxus canadensis Canadian yew
3 Tsuga caroliniana Carolina hemlock
1 Franklinia alatamaha Franklin tree
6 Viburnum nudum Possumhaw
3 Symphoricarpos orbiculatus Coralberry

All growing well in SE Pennsylvania.


== 3 of 17 ==
Date: Thurs, Feb 21 2008 4:37 am
From: Beth Koebel


I do love growing trees. The only problem I have is
that I live in an apartment so I have to use our farm
as a place to plant the trees and because it is a
family farm I need to ask before I plant. I don't
think that my family has done all that bad as we have
23 different species of trees growing in our farm
yard, of which 9 are oak. We can't take credit for
all of them, 10 of them were planted by God, or
Nature, or whom ever you what to insert. Most of
these were planted bare rooted at about 1-2 years of
age. My nephew planted an Ohio Buckeye seed > seven
years ago and now it is about 3 feet in height. On the
other side of the fence is the tulip tree that I
planted (bare root) about 30 years ago is now the
tallest tree in the yard at roughly 50'(I've lost my
notes on it. I know I measured it for Gary's thesis.
I've gotta start keeping better track of my records).

Species (# in the yard)
Acer saccharinum (2)
Aesculus glabra (1)
Betula nigra (1)
Carya illinoinensis (7)
Celtis occidentalis (1)
Cercis canadensis(1)
Cornus florida (1)
Diospyros virginiana (1)
Fraxinus pennsylvanica (1)
Juglans nigra (1)
Liriodendron tulipifera (1)
Prunus serotina (1)
Quercus alba (1)
Quercus coccinea (1)
Quercus imbricaria (2)
Quercus marilandica (1)
Quercus palustris (2)
Quercus rubra (1)
Quercus shumardii (2)
Quercus stellata (1)
Quercus x sternbergii (1)
Rhus copallina (40)these are at the yards edge
Ulmus rubra (1)


Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former....Albert Einstein

== 4 of 17 ==
Date: Thurs, Feb 21 2008 5:25 am


Yes indeed, scarlet oaks are fairly common in southern New England. There is one in our yard, one across the road, and all around the neighborhood. The Pin Oak also turns bright red in the fall.


== 5 of 17 ==
Date: Thurs, Feb 21 2008 7:21 am
From: Gary Smith


Next time you make it by the Missouri Botannical Gardens in St. Louis,
there should be very fine Shumard oak growing towards the back by a
large equipment shed, as I recall. I was last there in 1990, so
hopefully the tree is still there, and oak wilt has not got it.

There was also a very large Shumard oak at Big Oak Tree state park in
the SE corner of MO, but it is now gone. I'm thinking that tree was
over 6' dbh.


== 6 of 17 ==
Date: Thurs, Feb 21 2008 8:00 am
From: Beth Koebel


Yes the shumard is still at the Missouri Botanical
Gardens (MoBot)as of last fall. I just took another
look the Big Oak Tree State Park's web site they said
they are 2-1/2 hours south of here...maybe one of the
first nice days this spring when I'm off I just might
south to check out that "132'" persimmon tree.


== 7 of 17 ==
Date: Thurs, Feb 21 2008 8:04 am
From: Beth Koebel


When I looked at the 2008 MO champ list it lists the
persimmon at 124'


== 8 of 17 ==
Date: Thurs, Feb 21 2008 9:08 am
From: Larry

ENTS, Scott, Beth, Gary, Bob, Maybe we should grow trees from our
prospective areas and pass them to each other or anyone in our group
that would like them? I could do lots of Hickories and Southern Red
Oaks and Whites. Larry

== 9 of 17 ==
Date: Thurs, Feb 21 2008 9:40 am
From: Beth Koebel


I'm up for that.


== 10 of 17 ==
Date: Thurs, Feb 21 2008 9:54 am


What ae the most common species of hickories in your part of Mississippi? Here in southern New England, shagbark, bitternut, and pignut are what I mostly see. There are some mockernut, but beyond these 4 species, I don't recognize any others as growing natively. I love hickories. I am especially attracted to their rich yellow-amber fall color. I don't think there is any other species that has the coloration of the hickories. The BTU rating of shagbark is off the charts, and of course the durability of hickory wood is off the charts.


== 11 of 17 ==
Date: Thurs, Feb 21 2008 10:24 am
From: Gary Smith


If ENTS ever starts some sort of seed/plant swap, consider this my
application to be "cypress boy." lol


== 12 of 17 ==
Date: Thurs, Feb 21 2008 10:33 am
From: Larry

Bob, In extreme South Ms., Pignut, Mockernut and Water Hickory. In
Central Ms., Shagbark, Shellbark, Water, Pignut, Mockernut, Black and
Southern Shagbark. One I haven't I D'd yet(Southern). I need to get
back in the Forest I miss my connection there! I seem to be a little
rusty. Larry

== 13 of 17 ==
Date: Thurs, Feb 21 2008 10:35 am
From: "Edward Frank"

Maybe some WD-40

== 14 of 17 ==
Date: Thurs, Feb 21 2008 10:38 am
From: Larry

Gary, Way cool! I did grow a couple of Cypress one year from cones.
Two Bald and One Pond. I then got lazy and dug up a few saplings.
Cypress is one of my favorite Conifers! Next time I go to Noxubee I'll
measure one of the Giants up there. Larry

== 15 of 17 ==
Date: Thurs, Feb 21 2008 10:39 am
From: Gary Smith


Interesting that you have planted a couple of Mexican baldcypress in
PA. Have they have a tough time adjusting to your winters?


p.s. I see you don't have Nyssa Aquatica, Tupelo gum. If you have a
low, wet spot for a future transplant, I would be glad to mail you a
couple of seeds. I collected some this past December and they have
been sitting in my refrigerator. I plan to bring them out around April
1 and try to get them started.

== 17 of 17 ==
Date: Thurs, Feb 21 2008 11:23 pm
From: Beth Koebel


I learned the proper way to mulch when Kirkwood opened
up a park. They had a company there that demostated
how to mulch and trim trees. I guess that was about
4-5 years ago today when you go by the park you the
"volcano" mulch around the trees. It really makes me
sad. I plan on going to the next park board meeting
and bring this topic up.


"Information is moving--you know, nightly news is one way, of course, but it's also moving through the blogosphere and through the Internets."
Washington DC, May 2, 2007 George W. Bush

TOPIC: Growing Trees a Favorite Hobby

== 1 of 5 ==
Date: Fri, Feb 22 2008 3:33 am
From: pabigtrees


The Mexican Bald cypress' are pretty tough. Just like the other
species in that genera. Longwood gardens has a row in their nursery,
which inspired me to collect it.

I have killed two nyssa aquatica and two nyssa ogechee. I don't know
if I had bad stock, or the cold was too much for them. They would die
to the ground and resprout a few times, but then die. I would love to
try some from seed, they may fair better.

Scott Wade
5 Prince Eugene Ln
Media Pa 19063

== 2 of 5 ==
Date: Fri, Feb 22 2008 8:20 am
From: Gary Smith


I'll mail you a few seeds early next week.


== 3 of 5 ==
Date: Fri, Feb 22 2008 4:00 pm
From: "symplastless"


Good luck and may the force be with you!


== 4 of 5 ==
Date: Fri, Feb 22 2008 6:23 pm
From: Matthew Hannum

Hmm... if I had the space, there are so many trees I'd love to grow!

Hickories are high on the list - they receive so little respect since
many grow on the slow side (but not all) and very few places carry
them because of the difficulities in dealing with the taproots. But
they produce a good-sized tree - large, but not overwhelming - with
nuts for the animals and stunning golden fall color. I think a lot of
people are missing out by not having hickories easily available to the

Oaks - well, who doesn't love oaks? Scarlet oak is high on the list
for its nice fall color, and I'd love to stick a Bur Oak somewhere so
its strangely fuzzy and huge acorns could be appreciated. There's a
big one in DC not far from the Reflecting Pool in front of the Capitol
Building, and during the fall the ground is covered with acorns the
size of golfballs. It is funny to watch the looks on people's faces as
they take notice of these impossibly huge acorns when walking through
the area. The kids love them, too.

I'd love to have some maples for their fall color, and some mixed
conifers for winter interest. Oh, and a place where I can plant some
sycamores and tuliptrees and let them grow to huge proportions with
plenty of space to tower over the landscape.

But sadly, I live in an apartment for now - such plans will have to
wait, but even on a small suburban lot, some good, strong trees can be
planted. I just feel bad for the folks in these cramped newer
developments that barely have room for a Bradford Pear or some
similar, ghastly, short-lived weed tree. Again - they're just missing
out on the fun!

An ENTS tree exchange would be great!

== 5 of 5 ==
Date: Fri, Feb 22 2008 8:43 pm
From: James Parton


Yes, I love hickories too. Last fall while hiking Jump-Off Rock the
hickories which are numerous there were beautiful. American Chestnut
has a similar color but of course they are usually small and not very


TOPIC: container grown trees

== 1 of 1 ==
Date: Sat, Feb 23 2008 5:32 am

I used to think that container grown trees were the next best thing since
shirt pockets. In recent years I have seen so many root & tree health problems
developing as this type of tree has filled the market.

I too, used to be impressed by the fine root mass that was developed... no

This mass of roots may be good, for the grower, when the trees are under
irrigation at the nursery but it has become to be apparent that the development
of major lateral roots that form the stability of trees as they age, has
been shut down.

As roots hit the walls of containers, and yes... root fabrics, too... their
natural radial growth is essentially or more of the tropisms
may be a interrupted. The results are often a brillo pad of roots that do not
move laterally in the normal fashion, aggressively explore and provide strong
anchorage. Let this fine root mass get dry at the planting location and a
quick death will result.... there is no water-holding capacity in the woody root
mass and the bark/sand "soil mix". This is akin to attempting to wetting of
peat moss when it dries out.

Dr. Ed Gillman, researcher with the University of Florida, told me that most
of the trees that were lost in recent hurricanes had been container grown
trees... lacking sufficient lateral anchorage.

Perhaps the most pervasive problem with container grown trees is that the
trees are set too deeply in the containers thereby burying the root flares.
This situation eventually leads to massive girdling of the trunk and root flares
and we often find that this situation cannot be corrected by root flare
exposure and removal of the girdling roots... a very costly remedial process.

Currently, I am in the process of removing a root mass from a Loblolly Pine
in a 45 gallon container in order to find the root flares. So far, I have
removed a 6 inch profile from a root mass depth of 16 inches and no root flares,
yet. I am beginning to have strong reservations about planting this tree,
where is may eventually fall on my office... aaarrgghh!

Root flares... are an indicator of the natural grade of the tree.

The majority of my tree diagnostic calls relate to the burial of root flares
which leads to stunting of growth, canopy thinning and varying levels of
decay of the trunk tissues above the root flares... sometimes, very scary loss
of structural strength in large trees caused by trunk decay and death of large
lateral roots.

Container trees? I will stick with shirt pockets!


G. Sandy Rose, RCA
Registered Consulting Arborist
Shade Masters, Inc.
PO Box 13533
Arlington, TX 76094

(  )

TOPIC: Growing Trees a Favorite Hobby

== 1 of 3 ==
Date: Sat, Feb 23 2008 12:42 pm
From: doug bidlack

Larry, ENTS,

I've also been having lots of fun growing trees and
some shrubs. There are now about 150 trees/shrubs
growing at my parent's place in southeastern Michigan.
I planted most of them, but a few of the earliest
ones were planted by my parents. Actually, some of
these trees are growing in neighbors yards...there is
sort of one large field with five owners including my
parents. The neighbors have all encouraged me to
plant trees on their part of this field. Very cool.
There is also an adjacent field that is owned by
Kensington Metropolitan Park, where I am planning on
planting 25 bur oaks, 19 white oaks and 13 swamp white
oaks. So far I have planted 9 of the bur oaks, 8 of
the white oaks and 6 of the swamp white oaks. I've
also planted about 70 trees and shrubs at my home in
southeastern Massachusetts. Twenty-nine of these are
fruit trees and shrubs.

Oaks are probably my favorite trees as a Genus and
I've planted ten species so far in southeastern
Michigan. I plan to plant nine more species in fall
and a couple more in fall of next year. Two species
were already present on the property so I didn't need
to plant them. So by the end of next year I hope to
have 23 species growing in Michigan. I initially
tried transplanting seed grown material, because I
didn't want to deal with protecting them from meadow
voles. Unfortunately, transplant shock was really
slowing growth, so now I only plant seed right where I
want the tree to grow. I try to plant 100 seeds in a
2' by 2' square and I put a 3' diameter 'fence' of
1/4" hardware cloth around them. This fence is at
least 6" deep in the ground and I also put a 'lid' of
hardware cloth on top to keep the squirrels out.
Initially I wired the tops shut, but I now plan on
using safety pins or something like this to make
access to the seedlings much faster. Access is mostly
needed for weeding, but also for measuring. Growing
100 seedlings in a 2' x 2' plot helps to cut down
weeding because the seedlings can quickly outcompete
the weeds by both shading and root competition.
Eventually I weed the trees down to one after several
years of growing. I generally like to leave the
hardware cloth fences on for at least three winters
(including the initial winter when they are only
acorns). Then I switch to real fences and it's time
to worry about the deer.


== 2 of 3 ==
Date: Sat, Feb 23 2008 1:08 pm


At the time you reduce the number of seedlings to a single tree, do you ever get the urge to name the seedling? The entire human race seems to be able to be split into two groups (maybe three). First there is the great majority that feels no urge to name trees. Then there is a distinct minority who feels the need to place a moniker on at least some trees. If the third group exists, it is populated with souls who feel the urge to name trees, but are too embarrassed to follow through. If you decline to tell us which group you belong in, we'll understand.

Ooh, looking out the window, I just got a branch wave from Okey and there goes one from Dokey. They're both northern red oaks.


== 3 of 3 ==
Date: Sat, Feb 23 2008 1:46 pm
From: doug bidlack


I really have never had the urge to name any trees,
but I still treat them as if they were my children.
Last week when I was in Michigan I GPSed the locations
of the oaks in Kensington Metropark with a GPS unit
that is accurate to within one meter. Now I'll know
just where they are so I can plan on where to plant
their friends.

I hope to give some reports on what I found in
Michigan and Ontario last week, plus some stuff that I
did there back in November. Then there's the
California trip back in December. I'm so far behind!
I need to figure out the best way to show some of the
pictures that I took...hopefully by tomorrow.


TOPIC: container grown trees

== 1 of 1 ==
Date: Sat, Feb 23 2008 7:03 pm
From: Gary Smith

I have planted trees for many years and have never liked container
grown plants. I much prefer bare-root because I want to make sure the
roots are spread out from the tree in a natural fashion, not the
kinked, circling mess you can so often have with container stock.

Give me a younger, smaller seedling, let it be planted properly and at
the right time, mulch it properly and give it extra attention the
first couple of years and it will generally catch up to and pass a
larger container plant of the same species within a few years.

As an example, I planted a small grove of longleaf pine seedlings bare-
root in 1/95, babied them the first two growing seasons with regular
watering and a very light compost tea, and in 8/96 they first broke
the "grass stage" that longleaf are known for, with a small amount of
terminal growth. Beginning with the growing season of '97, they all
skyrocketed in growth and the tallest are now closing in on 40', and
several of them had their first seed cones last year.

Direct seeding, therefore never transplanting at all, can be the best
method of all, but you've really got to protect that little plant when
it first pops up.



My brother bought a house in Illinois several years ago and wanted to plant
a tree in the barren front yard. Both being trained arborists, we knew of
the dangers of potted trees and structural issues. So when we went to the
nursery to purchase a tree we intentionally picked the absolute worst tree
we could find. Our thought was that we could "save" the tree from an
ignorant homeowner and avoid its potential short life span due to
uncorrected structural and cultural issues. The tree we selected, a red bud,
was the "poster child" of cultural ignorance; crossing limbs, bad forks, and
redundant limbs. I think we may have gotten a discount after pointing out
the structural nightmare it was.

He ended up selling the house, but returned a few years later and was able
to climb the tree and perform a gratuitous conscientious pruning, including
pruning the growth away from the house as it had grown so fast!

It was a very satisfying "project" and we felt we had made a small, but
significant impact on the urban landscape. But we wanted more. So we also
performed "guerrilla pruning" where we would go into a park at night and
perform much needed structural (corrective) pruning on newly planted and
smaller, established trees. One night, we "hit" a park and generated a huge
amount of debris. The trees were in bad shape and in need of serious
pruning. Not wanting to leave the debris on the ground in disarray and
attract negative attention, we ended up dragging ALL of the brush to the
street and stacking it neatly. The next day the city came by and hauled it
away! Another success story!

Will Blozan

Interesting - I can't say that I've ever felt an urge to name a tree
with a specific, human-like name, but I do give them monikers of sorts
based upon their appearance, location, etc. "The huge, leaning
sycamore by the river," or "the looming, broken down tulip tree near
the cathedral grove" are examples.

I don't name the trees, but I do *know* them - there is something
comforting in walking into the woods and seeing old friends - huge
trees that were around long before I was born - and seeing them
through each season and each year. Sad are the times when a beloved
tree-friend passes; but there are many trees in the woods of great
stature who are like old friends. I love sitting in the shade of these
great trees and watching the clouds pass by, the squirrels look for
nuts, or the autumn winds shake the colored leaves from their leafy
crowns. The trees are seemingly eternal in a world so often full of
confusion, random changes, and frustration, and I definitely feel a
sense of withdraw when kept away from the woods - and my trees - for
any length of time.

Mathew Hannum