Elders Challenge #1

Discussion in 'Tree and Plant ID Database' started by GreyOne, Jun 30, 2010.

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  1. GreyOne

    GreyOne Elder Lifetime Supporter

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    Elders Challenge -#1

    The Elders, in solemn conclave in the Sacred Cave of the Elders, have deliberated long, and concluded that the time is ripe for a challenge to all members of the tribe.

    This first challenge is to go forth in the next month, and identify 5 trees in your area. Bring back a leaf or twig from each, and a picture. Post your trophies here in this thread, that all may see.
    If you are truly worthy, you will tell where this tree is likely to be found, and what it is good for.

    No prizes will be awarded, no judgments rendered. This challenge is for each member to go forth, learn and perhaps teach all the members of our tribe. Those who complete the challenge will be awarded a virtual Eagle Feather as a symbol of their skill.

    The Elders have spoken, and the pipe has been smoked. Go forth, and show us your skill.

    [This challenge will hold for the next 30 Suns, until the end of the month July .]

    So speak the Elders !

    Trekon86 GreyOne Sgt.Mac
     
  2. Sgt. Mac

    Sgt. Mac Elder Staff Member Administrator Supporter Bushclass I Bushclass II Bushclass Instructor

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    Ok guys you heard it, who's up for the challange? Go out and find your leaves and post up!
     
  3. Ursinos

    Ursinos Guide

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    I'll give 'er a go. 5 trees isn't that hard to do!
     
  4. Sgt. Mac

    Sgt. Mac Elder Staff Member Administrator Supporter Bushclass I Bushclass II Bushclass Instructor

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    Good man!!
     
  5. Pabloturtle

    Pabloturtle Scout Bushclass I

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    Sounds like fun!
     
  6. Grits

    Grits Guide

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    Great Challenge: I accept!

    Thanks for the challenge! :)

    There are two trees that I don't know that I've been meaning to identify in my local woods, so this gives me extra incentive. I might find a couple more that i need to learn, also.
     
  7. Flintlock

    Flintlock Guide

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    This challenge is a great idea. Get outdoors....and learn something.
     
  8. Nerual the Mad

    Nerual the Mad Guide

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    I'm in. Gives me a good excuse to get out and do something.
     
  9. riley

    riley Scout

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    Ill go. Like NTM said, gives me an excuse to go out.
     
  10. GreyOne

    GreyOne Elder Lifetime Supporter

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    I have invited my friend Bur Oak to look in on this thread, and see if he can help us on any difficult Id problems. If he can't figure it out, it is going to be a real doozy !! ;)
    Y'all feel free to ask if you need help, we will all try to give it.
    G1
     
  11. Trekon86

    Trekon86 Guest

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    I am going to take a walk on Friday, it is my day off.
    :)
    PMZ
     
  12. STOBBER

    STOBBER Scout

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    The posting of pictures is a bigger challenge than findng the tree's.......i suck at posting pic's!
     
  13. RangerJoe

    RangerJoe Bushwhacker Bushclass II

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    sounds good gang, thanks elders, I was lookin for something fun to do!!!:)
     
  14. nickosnow

    nickosnow Guide

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  15. beanbag

    beanbag Guest

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    I like trees, so count me in.:)
     
  16. Sgt. Mac

    Sgt. Mac Elder Staff Member Administrator Supporter Bushclass I Bushclass II Bushclass Instructor

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    Good going guys, get out there and get them leaves!!
     
  17. IA Woodsman

    IA Woodsman Overwatch Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator Vendor Bushclass Instructor

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    I am in, hope to get out for a overnight tomorrow.
     
  18. tennecedar

    tennecedar Supporter Supporter Bushclass I

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    Woohoo somethin to do!
    I needed a goal this week. I've cleaned all my shooters and resharpened everything in the house. (And I have a few knives)
    Thanks Elders for a kick in the pants.
     
  19. GreyOne

    GreyOne Elder Lifetime Supporter

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    The Elders appreciate your enthusiasm ! :)

    Keep your knives sharp, as a good 'crafter must, and be prepared to take a leaf at any moment ! :) ;)
     
  20. SloTurtle

    SloTurtle Tracker

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  21. hushnel

    hushnel Guide

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    They didn't name it Florida for nothing. I'm in. I'm going to stick with native shrubberies though some of the invasives are pretty cool too.

    I got mangos :)
     
  22. GreyOne

    GreyOne Elder Lifetime Supporter

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    I think the natives are more generally useful in terms of finding them across wide areas, but the invasive species can be really interesting as well. If you have time, do some of both ! :)
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2010
  23. Creek Walker

    Creek Walker Guide

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    Well!! First I apologize for the photos. My camera is 12 years old and will not take pictures in sunlight period. After 50 or so pics this is the best I could muster.

    I selected these trees as I actually do utilize one or more products from them.

    Tree distribution is provided by a link as a picture will tell more then I could possibly explain.



    Black Walnut: Juglans nigra

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Distribution: http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=JUNI

    Habitat:

    Trees are found in mixed hardwood forest in well drained soil such as bottom-land and flood plains.

    Uses:

    Wood can be used for furniture, gun-stocks, veneer and a variety of wood products.

    The fruit can be pickled when immature. The green hulls can be crushed and used for fish poison and the hulls can also be leached to make wood stain.

    The Black Walnut has a very oily and delicious nutmeat that can be extracted but not without effort as the shells are very hard.

    Okay that is basically what I knew they could be used for. I found this pdf and it is absolutely amazing the uses for this tree.

    http://www.sfp.forprod.vt.edu/factsheets/walnut.pdf


    PawPaw: Asimina triloba

    [​IMG]

    Distribution:
    http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=ASTR

    Habitat:
    PawPaw are usually found in low areas along creek and river banks.
    Identification is easy as the leaves are large and resembles a tropical plant rather then a tree from a deciduous forest.

    Uses:

    The fruit resembles banana custard, but the flavor differs from person to person.
    The inner bark can be used for making clothing and fishing nets and stringers.

    Common Persimmon: Diospyros virginiana

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Distribution:
    http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=DIVI5


    Habitat:
    You usually find them along fence rows, roadsides, along edges of fields and in deciduous woodlands.

    Uses:
    Fruit can be eaten raw when ripe or cooked in breads, puddings, custards, and
    cakes. The seeds can be roasted and used as a substitute for coffee. (eating
    green unripe persimmon will cause extreme puckering of the mouth, but it's
    always a good gag for the unsuspecting.) :D

    The wood can be used for golf clubs, bows, wooden utensils and furniture.

    River Birch:
    Betula nigra

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    Distribution: http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=BENI

    Habitat:
    River Birch are usually found in bottom ground along the flood plains of creeks and rivers.

    Uses:
    The sap can be used to make birch beer, vinegar or just as a refreshing drink.

    The bark of young trees makes excellent fire starter and it is easy to collect as the trees grow fairly fast and the bark just peels away. One strike with a fire steel and you good to go.

    The wood can be used for furniture, eating utensils, basket materials.

    Sassafras: Sassafras albidum

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Distribution: http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=SAAL5

    Habitat:
    They will be found in moist well drained soils growing in clumps as the Sassafras propagates itself by sending out runners from the parent tree.

    Uses:
    Sassafras tea can be made from the leaves, bark or roots.
    The leaves can be dried to make a soup thickener called File (Fee Lay).
    The leaves can be crushed and applied to the skin to help ward off mosquitoes and the leaves can also be added to a shelter to repel insects.
    Sassafras can also be used in perfumes and soaps.
    Sassafras was one of the original ingredients of root beer.

    The wood can be used to make furniture, posts and other wood products.
    A small grove of Sassafras saplings will provide a lot of frame material for a wilderness shelter in a short time.



    This was a good exercise as I found out a little more about the trees I selected and now for more. :)
     
  24. GreyOne

    GreyOne Elder Lifetime Supporter

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    Excellent !I learned a good bit as well. :)
     
  25. Pabloturtle

    Pabloturtle Scout Bushclass I

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    Great post CW.
     
  26. Sgt. Mac

    Sgt. Mac Elder Staff Member Administrator Supporter Bushclass I Bushclass II Bushclass Instructor

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    Outstanding!!!! Ooorah!
     
  27. Trekon86

    Trekon86 Guest

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    Took a walk today, aside from discovering that I *can* pointshoot with 115 grain ball loads if I don't hesitate and just blast away:rolleyes:, this is what I found:
    [​IMG]

    Clockwise:

    Staghorn Sumac:
    Berries useful as a tea, makes a lemony flavored concoction. Be sure to strain the fuzzies out! Also good (in stronger concentration) as a cough syrup. Never done that meself, so you're on your own. LMAO. Just steep the mashed up berries in cold water for a few hours, and then strain well with cheesecloth or a bandana.

    Wild Grape:

    This one isn't really a tree--more of a vine. So I am going to include one extra tree I found by accident later on during my walk.
    Obviously wild grapes won't fruit too well unless they are pruned from time to time, just like any grapevines. And when they do, you must race the birds and squirrels to get them. And oftentimes, they have large seeds in them like most older varieties of grapes. To get around this, just squeeze the skins to split them, and gobble the inner grape down whole without chewing completely.
    Of course, if you are making wines or something similar:drool: Then you need not worry about the seeds. Just press them like any ole' grape.
    Grapes are high in natural sugars, great if you are hypoglycemic or simply on a sugarlow because you haven't eaten in a while. These would make a great "fill in" fruit for times of privation, to give variety to your beans and bacon diet.

    Maple:
    Good for turning blanks (bowls and cups), furniture, spoons, gunstocks, knife scales, and any application that necessitates a prettily-grained, lightly-colored hardwood. I'd recommend carving it green, and slowly drying it to prevent checking. If you're into wood turning (bowls, cups, etc) it'd probably be best to work it after it's been seasoned. Same for gunstocks. I've seen some really nice tiger maple hawk handles but I'd prefer good ol' hickory or osage on my hawks...seems to me it'd last a whole lot longer. Maple isn't really known for its toughness.

    Sassafras:
    Good for teas and maybe poultices. The leaves have a use (maybe the poultice thing?) but I've never done that myself. Leaves can also be dried and ground to make File powder (cajun seasoning for gumbo).
    I like to make tea from the roots though. What you're looking for for this purpose is the smaller plants, not even saplings. The thing about sassafras is that the roots are weird. Like an L-shaped taproot, a real PITA to dig up if the plant is very big at all.

    The good thing is that wherever this stuff grows well, it grows *well*. Almost to the point of being a pain in the rear, like weeds in your corn.

    Somebody said on here that if you drink a cup of it a day for a week, chiggers will avoid you. I can't speak to that myself, cause I don't drink it that often. It's good stuff though, I enjoy it when I can. Search "sassafras" on this site and you will find the thread I posted and Joezilla's rolled into one. Lots of good info in there.

    White birch:
    White birch is great stuff, a pleasure to work with, lightweight, and like most other birches it produces a good quantity of syrupy sap in the springtime. Sticks65 posted a tutorial on his DIY Birch Wine awhile back.

    Ray Mears features the birches heavily in a lot of his films and shows, and the internet and this site are full of good, useful info on the uses of the birches.

    Go, young grasshopper--and see if your search-fu avails you.


    Later, on the way home...I saw these:

    [​IMG]

    Can anybody tell what it is? I'll betcha Kepis can:D


    Closer:
    [​IMG]


    You guessed it--fruiting hawthorn!
    I'd never seen any of the haws around here. I'm not sure why...whether because the birds and squirrels beat me to them, or because most of them grow in under the trees and don't get enough sunlight?:confused:

    Either way I am very happy...you can bet I will be stopping by in a week's time to see what they taste like:drool:

    And then...a few dozen yards later I found this leaf:
    [​IMG]



    Now I must be frank...this is a very very large oak leaf. I knew it was an oak leaf, by the shape. I looked it up and from what I can tell, it is a chestnut oak tree I plucked it off of. But I may be wrong--feel free to (dis)abuse me!


    For a size reference, the book it is next to is my Judy of the Woods NA field guide to edible and medicinal plants. It prints to 3x5 index card size. Even given the cover being bigger...:eek:

    That's one big leaf!



    Hope ya'll enjoyed my picture and hope you didn't mind my rambling too much.
    Cheers,
    PMZ
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 2, 2010
  28. Creek Walker

    Creek Walker Guide

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    Swamp White Oak?
     
  29. GreyOne

    GreyOne Elder Lifetime Supporter

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    Trek, that is one big Oak leaf ! Maybe BurOak can give us a clue on that. :)
     
  30. Sgt. Mac

    Sgt. Mac Elder Staff Member Administrator Supporter Bushclass I Bushclass II Bushclass Instructor

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    Great job Trek!!!!
     
  31. Creek Walker

    Creek Walker Guide

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    Actually it does resemble Bur Oak. Me thinks you all pulled a sneaky. :)
     
  32. GreyOne

    GreyOne Elder Lifetime Supporter

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    The Elders ! Sneaky ??!
    Surely you cannot believe that ?

    We are beyond mere sneakiness, we are _subtle_, and our ways are mysterious. <g >.
     
  33. sarge1967

    sarge1967 Guide

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    I'm in! I will do this at our Illinois meet next weekend.
     
  34. GreyOne

    GreyOne Elder Lifetime Supporter

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    Sarge, see how many others at the meet you can "entice" into participating. :)
    I'd like to see a lot of pictures from the meet ! ;)
     
  35. sarge1967

    sarge1967 Guide

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    Roger that G1.

    I am hoping to spend some quality time doing plant and tree ID out there.

    That and Mac teaching me to do the bow drill thing are the two skill sets I want to work on most for this outing.
     
  36. easy

    easy Scout

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    Im in
     
  37. lonetracker

    lonetracker Guide

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    i got a bunch of pics,of some trees so here goes.
    got into a yellow birch stand the other day.
    leaves
    [​IMG][/IMG]

    [​IMG][/IMG]

    i like the yellow birch bark better for tinder then white birch.it is finer and easy to get a good handfull.
    [​IMG][/IMG]

    [​IMG][/IMG]

    yellow birch seem to bush out more then white birch

    [​IMG][/IMG]

    when yellow birch get large they can be hard to dsitinguish.the paperiness disapears,the bark gets hard and rough.this one is about 30 in. accros the stump.no more frizzy bark.

    [​IMG][/IMG]

    [​IMG][/IMG]

    i see alot of yellow birch with exposed roots like this.anyone care to guess on what would cause this?it is not caused by erosion.

    [​IMG][/IMG]

    i wanted to take some pics of a paper birch for comparison.unbelievably i found this.a yellow/paper birch siamese twin the bottom was grown together.
    yellow on right
    [​IMG][/IMG]

    [​IMG][/IMG]

    [​IMG][/IMG]

    random yellow birch

    [​IMG][/IMG]

    range
    http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=BEAL2

    betula alleghaniensis
    also known as grey birch/silver birch
    ht 70-100 ft
    cool moist uplands.i see it grow from cedar swamps up into hardwoods.seems to grow better under other trees/starting in shade
    the twig ends have a mild wintergreen taste if chewed.make tea with same
    can be tapped to make syrup,you must boil 100 gallons of sap to get one gallon of syrup,(maple is about 45/1)
    tap the tree in spring for a refreshing tonic.
    birch beer .
    inner bark can be dried and ground into flour.
    makes great firewood.split as soon as posible the bark holds moisture in big time.
    good looking wood for furniture.makes nice tongue and groove with lots of dark and light colors.clearcoats mostly to a rich light golden color with much wavey grain.
    of course excellent tinder.
    deer love the buds in winter.
    nextree
    eastern hemlock fir
    tsuga canadensis
    evergreen
    hieght 70ft
    range

    http://plants.usda.gov/java/nameSearch

    these are from last winter.balsam fir on left.hemlock on right.balsam fir is the closest look alike to hemlock.imo they both have flat needles,that grow out the sides of the stem and are softhemlock needles are shorter and lighter on undersides.spruce are also similiar, needles have a rounder cross section and grow out all around stem and are picky

    [​IMG][/IMG]

    [​IMG][/IMG]
    tree shots.bushier then balsam
    [​IMG][/IMG]

    [​IMG][/IMG]

    hemlock normally have long branches,compared to other evergreens.

    [​IMG][/IMG]


    [​IMG][/IMG]

    here is a shot looking up a hemlock,the next shot is a balsam for comparison

    [​IMG][/IMG]

    [​IMG][/IMG]

    here is a shot of a yellow birch on left,the smaller left of center is an iron wood the bigger center tree is a hemlock,and the bigger on right is a eastern cedar.notice the dark bark of the hemlock.

    [​IMG][/IMG]

    needles make good tea rich in vit c.seem to make me pee.:)really
    can eat the inner bark
    can usually find dry dead twigs attached to lower trunk.great kindleing it usually splits when breaking it.thats a plus.dry branches break hard and violently.really stings cold hands
    deer browse this tree heavy in winter.all lower green branches are eaten about 7 ft high,and all young are eaten around here(mich/wis) so there are allmost no new hemlocks growing.
    this tree introduced me to the flying squirrel.i was bow hunting deer out of one .i had a stand strapped to the tree about 18ft high.i got down at dark one night and heard a peculliar peaping above me.upon shining my light up the tree i saw a flying squirrel perched on my stand peaping at me.must have kept him from getting to the acorns nearby.they are nocturnal.to this day if i hear that peeping at night i know just what it is.

    i have downy serviceberry,leatherwood,and balm of gilead also will have to be continued.
    bill
     
  38. GreyOne

    GreyOne Elder Lifetime Supporter

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    Thanks, LT, some great shots there ! I have very few opportunities to examine conifers here in my area, though East Texas has an interesting selection.
     
  39. Sgt. Mac

    Sgt. Mac Elder Staff Member Administrator Supporter Bushclass I Bushclass II Bushclass Instructor

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    Great post LT!!!
     
  40. RangerJoe

    RangerJoe Bushwhacker Bushclass II

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    LoneTracker, I believe the answer to being able to see the exposed roots is...
    When the tree was young it probably was growing on top of an old stump, after the tree was established through the years the old stump deteriorated leaving the new tree standing up off the ground in its place.
    Just my guess, let me know what you think.
     
  41. Zengunfighter

    Zengunfighter Guide

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    I need a reference for tropical/Caribbean trees. :(
     
  42. Trekon86

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    Those are some great shots LT!
    Grey birch is one of my favorites too...always fun to chew on the twigs...mmmm....:D
    PMZ
     
  43. Trekon86

    Trekon86 Guest

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  44. lonetracker

    lonetracker Guide

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    joe,that is my theory also. here is a hemlock growing above a half decayed stump[​IMG][/IMG]
     
  45. lonetracker

    lonetracker Guide

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    and along those same lines hear is a pic of a maple that must have grown out of a rotten birch.the birch decayed leaving its bark and now the maple wears the birch bark.

    [​IMG][/IMG]
     
  46. RangerJoe

    RangerJoe Bushwhacker Bushclass II

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    Ya, I used to see that sort of stuff all the time when I lived up in Sault Ste. Marie
     
  47. Pabloturtle

    Pabloturtle Scout Bushclass I

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    Tree 1

    Have a few projects and experiments on the table that required the best hard wood I could find in our area. So over the weekend I planned a day trip 60 miles South of the city into the Owyhee mountain range just outside Silver City. Aside from looking at any plant that strikes my fancy what I'm looking for today is;

    Curly-Leaf Mountain Mahogany(Cercocarpus ledifolius)

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    Here in the SW part of the state it prefers elevations above 5,000'. The stand we wandered through for the day was nearer 6,000'. MM does not grow well under a canopy and prefers a more open terrain. At times it looks more like a large shrub and is classed as a small tree. Seldom reaching over 12'-16' in this area, but can reach +-30'. The plant is very drought resistant and can easily endure extreme weather conditions.

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    As you can see by the picture it has just finished flowering. The leaf is lance shaped with the edges curling, thus the name. Leaves are leathery and at times sticky. When it seeds later in the year a long filament type hair appears causing the trees to glimmer with a silvery haze.

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    These last couple pictures were taken a couple years ago, in the Fall of course.

    Plant uses;
    Almost too numerous to mention. For the Shoshone and Paiute in the area it was a growing medicine cabinet. In most cases it was the bark from different parts of the tree that were used. Though the leaves and flowers were used also. The bark was also used to make a reddish dye.
    Because of the density and hardness of the dried wood it was the wood of chose for digging sticks. It was also used for nocks, fore-shafts(arrows & spears), arrows, spears, bows. When mining came to the area the trees were highly prized as firewood and the making of charcoal for smelting and forging. The tree is heavily foraged by most four-legged critters

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    1"-1.5" limb

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    3/8"-1/4" twig

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    Project material

    My experience in working with MM has taught me it is best to work with it green because once it dries it will give any blade a work out. Early in the year it cuts easily with a bow saw or SAK saw blade. De-barking is best done when green and at times can be done simply using your finger nails. It can be straightened easy enough using heat or by staking it out. Once tempered the wood is unbelievable hard.

    I'll add the other trees from the weekend as I edit the photos later.
     
  48. Buckskin

    Buckskin Guide

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    Well, here is my contribution.

    Chinese Elm - Native to Japan, China and Korea. Can be found in most of US. It is an ornamental tree.

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    Eastern Red Ceder - Found in most of the US in the Central Time Zone and East. Some uses include lining ceder chests and used for pencil making.

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    Mimosa - Native range is from Iran to Japan. Found in US from New Jersey to Louisiana to California. A local horticulturist tells me it is listed as a noxious weed in Oklahoma. Use was intended to be ornamental.

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    I think this one is a young apple tree. Great carving wood and the fruit is not to bad either.

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    I think this one is a Mulberry. Not sure at all. No fruit to go buy. It is tough to cut with a little hand saw.

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    If anyone can help positively identify the last to I would appreciate it. I hope the Elders will allow me back in the smoke house.
     
  49. Sgt. Mac

    Sgt. Mac Elder Staff Member Administrator Supporter Bushclass I Bushclass II Bushclass Instructor

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    Excellent job so far, well done Buddy
     
  50. Sgt. Mac

    Sgt. Mac Elder Staff Member Administrator Supporter Bushclass I Bushclass II Bushclass Instructor

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    Great job Buck way to go Brother
     
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