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Re: This really bums me out.

The person who burned it should be beaten to death.
by jamesrobertsmith
Sat Aug 11, 2012 6:59 am
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Back Yard Pine

The challenge called for courage
The first dare I ever recall
To climb a tree so tall
Like a bet I couldn't hedge.

Little brother and his friend
Atop the big white pine
Taunted, "Come up!" Could I decline?
On this my status would depend.

Though oldest of the gang of ten
In a neighborhood full of boys
A girl could lose her poise
If mired in fear's pen.

First reach brought quick reward--
A yield of sticky sap
My hands served in their wrap
'Round smooth branches top toward.

I hung by arms as feet walked bole
One foot, knee crook--then all of me
Over the first branch of the tree.
I sat to rest and gird my soul.

Then rose to stand and look above
At rays of rungs in tiers from trunk.
I now ascended like a monk
To abbey green I grew to love.

This is another Beginning Creative Writing class poem I wrote years ago. Some of the rhymes are a stretch, and it's kind of simple minded, but I like to think that it goes from superficial competition/status stuff to a more important finding of courage and love of nature. I was "extremely shy" in school (as my third grade report card said) but all-out joyful at home in the outdoors.
by Bosque
Thu May 30, 2013 2:12 pm
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Drone Explores & Measures Trees In A Very Remote Forest

I recently explored the remote redwood forest of by UAV. No tree over 350' were found there but the area was completely unexplored so it was a new frontier and it needed to be surveyed. It would take 3 full days to just reach the upper part of this basin on foot. Now I can explore it in 30 minutes.

The attached represents the Mission Planner Software I use to program the drone to access a remote, unexplored redwood forest. The flight path in 3D overlay on Google Earth and Terrain maps + front mounted GoPro pictures. The mission must be carefully planned otherwise the drone will crash.

This mission had the UAV flying 400 feet over the surface features. After locating all the tallest tops on HD video I later returned with a point cloud mapping drone/UAV for targeted height measurement. This UAV/drone uses a downward pointed digital camera in photo burst mode. The triggering is accomplished through the AutoPilot software at each waypoint arrival.

Michael Taylor

California Big Trees Coordinator droneinside.jpg bridge creek mission4.jpg bridge creek mission3.jpg bridge creek mission2.jpg bridge creek mission1.jpg bc4.jpg
by M.W.Taylor
Fri Jul 19, 2013 1:21 pm
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Re: How others describe height measuring

I am extremely impressed with West Virginia's program! The trees are all getting remeasurements and accurate ones at that. I'm a bit envious of the many enormous sycamores. The sourwood at 98' is fascinating. It attains that height in just several states, all others being in the far southern Appalachians, and I'm surprised it achieves it that far north. Tangent and pole methods are listed on just a handful of entries. Outstanding!
by bbeduhn
Tue Jul 09, 2013 9:30 am
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Re: Where is the top?


This is a good case and point to always scan every leader with the laser, even if not the highest angle. And get back as far as possible.

Michael Taylor

I think the craziest measuring experience I had was in the huge, broad crown trees in congaree. There were three of us and we'd scatter to all sides of the tree and come up with significantly different numbers. It was more or less luck of the draw which major limb system was taller.
by Rand
Thu May 16, 2013 2:20 pm
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Oak Leaf with Split Midrib

Hi All,

Here's an unusual leaf I found at Simpsonwood in GA. For scale, the notebook it's sitting on is 9 1/2" long.

I'm curious how common this may be and if anyone has other examples.



- Matt
by Matt Markworth
Tue Oct 15, 2013 4:55 pm
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Re: Oak Leaf with Split Midrib

pattyjenkins1 wrote:Looks like a mutant red oak leaf to me.

Blame Fukishima......... ;)
by Rand
Wed Oct 16, 2013 4:04 pm
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Re: Oak Leaf with Split Midrib


Very cool leaf. Thanks for posting.

Given how deeply lobed the leaf is, scarlet oak seems more likely than northern red oak.

I've never seen an oak leaf do that before. I did see a sumac with a two lobed leaflet one time. Here's a mutant white spruce cone.


by Jess Riddle
Wed Oct 16, 2013 6:53 pm
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Carbon emission offset from planting trees


As local organizer of the 2013 Ecological Society of America annual meeting, it was part of my duties to offset carbon emissions for travel of more than 3000 scientists from all over the U.S. and the world to Minneapolis. So, as explained in the ESA blog (link below), I decided to use $5 from the registration fee of each attendee, totaling more than $16,000, to plant a new forest.

We made a poster explaining the reforestation effort on the Rum River north of Minneapolis by Great River Greening, a local non-profit organization that restores native plant communities, and placed that in the lobby of the convention center/registration area to make everyone aware of the effort.
Wayne and Lee at ESA 2013 convention-small.jpg
Wayne Ostlie of Great River Greening and Lee Frelich stand by the poster.

Critical to the planting were calculations of the amount of carbon offset. A paper by Fissore, Espeleta, Nater Hobbie and Reich in Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, provided estimates of carbon fixed by age for newly planted forests on abandoned agricultural land in the upper Midwest. Assuming 177g CO2 emitted per passenger km for a typical long-distance flight, times 0.273 = 48.3 g C per passenger km. One metric ton = 1,000,000 g. Therefore, 37 T Carbon fixed at age 10 = 37,000,000 g / 48.3 = 766,000 passenger km offset at age 10 for one hectare of forest. As shown in the table, by age 50, 185 tons of carbon per hectare would be fixed in tree growth.


About 2 ha of forest is being planted using the ESA money this week on this very rich site just above the floodplain, including bur oak, cottonwood and other mesic forest trees. To give something in English units for those of you who prefer that, by age 50, this should offset about 1500, 3000 mile round trips by plane to Minneapolis. Although we don't know the exact travel distances and mode of travel for everyone who attended the meeting, this will be a large majority of the travel emissions caused by the ESA 2013 meeting.

by Lee Frelich
Tue Oct 08, 2013 3:22 pm
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Cloud Mapping of the LaPine Ponderosa Pine, OR

I just processed the point cloud from recent pictures taken by Ascending the Giant and Terry Asker. From 37 images I get a good lower bole point cloud included the sign. When you look down the barrel you can clearly see LaPine was two trees that fused a long time ago. This cross-section has the classic "heart shaped lobes". Just like Drury Tree. See attached JPG images of Meshlab point cloud. You can download meshlab at

This is the best open source and free 3D graphic view by far that I know about.

Michael Taylor

American Forests Big Trees Coordinator For California
by M.W.Taylor
Tue Mar 19, 2013 6:20 pm
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Nov 3 & 7 Hemlock Project: New Music & Environmental Science

We hope that some of the NTS may be able to make one of these presentations!

The Hemlock Project: Connecting New Music & Environmental Science

November 3, 2013 at 3PM
The Litchfield Community Center
421 Bantam Road, Litchfield, Connecticut
(nearby to the White Memorial Conservation Center)

November 7, 2013 at 6PM
Capital Community College
Centinal Hill Hall Auditorium, 11th Floor
950 Main Street, Hartford, Connecticut

Robert T. Leverett, guest speaker
Michael Gatonska, composer
The New Frontiers Cello Quartet

Eastern Hemlock: The Passing of a Forest Icon
Robert T. Leverett

Soundscapes and the Songs of Trees
Michael Gatonska

A performance of Beneath Hemlock Tabernacles

The New Frontiers Cello Quartet are:
Jeffrey Krieger
Han-Wei Lu
Pablo Issa
David Sims

Questions and answers will follow the performance.

Beneath Hemlock Tabernacles is a 10’ composition for violoncello quartet and pre-recorded soundscape. The idea to compose this work originated with a soundscape recording of hemlock trees that I captured in Litchfield, CT, and the recording reveals the song of the delicate, flat sprays of one of our most beautiful eastern native trees. The ambient, if not ghostly sonorities of the hemlocks are intermittently punctuated by the ‘groanings’ of one dead trunk – caught leaning against another hemlock trunk that still lives, and this particular sound world of the forest is the one that the cello quartet ‘performs’ with. Instrumental effects, soft bowings, and other white noise effects are meant to interact with and imitate the habitat and acoustic of the hemlock grove. The form of this composition follows the amplitude map of the hemlock soundscape – a musical form made up of building and receding intensities created by Nature herself.

The music of Michael Gatonska has been performed by the Minnesota Orchestra, the Cabrillo Festival Orchestra, the American Composers Orchestra, the Pacific Symphony, the Hartford Symphony, the Krakow Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Chicago Chamber Musicians, Talea Ensemble, the LOCRIAN chamber players, and SONYC (String Orchestra of New York City) among others. His music has been performed at festivals around the world, and he has received numerous awards for his compositions including the 2012 American Prize for Orchestra Composition, the Chicago Symphony First Hearing Award, four ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer Awards, fellowship and grant awards from the Kosciuszko Foundation, the American Music Center, Meet the Composer, and the American Composers Forum. His music has been recorded on the Albany Records label, Major Who Media, the American Composers Orchestra Digital Downloads Series Volume I, and the Einstein Records label.
As a result of his membership in the Native Tree Society, his work has evolved to include capturing soundscapes in an effort to both present and inspire audiences with a deep listening experience, and to advance the development of a personal artistic vision which is to combine the things in life that he is most passionate about – music composition, trees, and nature’s acoustics.

Robert T. Leverett is the cofounder and Executive Director of the Native Tree Society and the cofounder and President of Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest. He is coauthor of the Sierra Club Guide to Ancient Forests of the Northeast and a coauthor of Island Press’s Eastern Old Growth Forests, Prospects for Rediscovery and Recovery. He is a coauthor of several other books on old growth forests and the art and science of measuring trees. He is the principal architect of the Ancient Eastern Forest Conference Series held at various eastern universities during the period from 1993 through 2007. Leverett has written and been the subject of many articles on tree measuring and the science and aesthetics of old growth forests. He is currently the Chairman of the Forest Reserves Scientific Advisory Committee for the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation. He leads interpretive walks for a variety of environmental organizations including the Massachusetts Audubon Society, Sierra Club, Walnut Hill Programs in Nature and Tracking.

Jeffrey Krieger has been principal cellist of the Hartford Symphony Orchestra, chamber musician and soloist since 1979. He has also been for more than two decades among the new generation of solo recitalists who have incorporated technology - the computer and video - as well as an electric cello built by Vermont craftsman, Tucker Barrett into performance. He has received numerous national awards for this work among which a prestigious 1993 Solo Recitalist Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts which allowed extensive touring in the USA, a 1996 State of Connecticut Commission on the Arts Artist Fellowship for work in multi-media, as well as awards from the Canada Council, the Roberts Foundation Creation of New Work Initiative, New England Foundation for the Arts, and American Composers Forum.
Mr. Krieger has performed at prestigious venues, music schools and conservatories, museums, and international music festivals across the US and abroad. Past performances of note have been as featured soloist with the New York City Ballet at Lincoln Center's New York State Theater and the Saratoga Festival, a solo recital of music by Lithuanian composer, Osvaldas Balakauskas sponsored by the American-Lithuanian Society of New York at Merkin Concert Hall, and a performance of Videocello at the Kennedy Center. He has been a frequent performer and guest lecturer at educational institutions such as the Cincinnati Conservatory, San Francisco Conservatory, Peabody Conservatory, Yale University, the Cleveland Institute of Music, and the Conservatorium of Music, Hobart, Tasmania. Performances at international music festivals have included the Boston Cyberarts Festival; International Festival of Electronic Art at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; International Festival of Arts and Ideas, New Haven; Subtropics Festival, Miami International University; New Directions Cello Festival at the Knitting Factory, New York City; Ebeltoft Festival, Denmarck. In 2000 he was soloist on the electric cello with the Anchorage Symphony Orchestra, and in 2001 performed composer, Robert Carl’s A Wide Open Field for electric cello with the Hartford Symphony Orchestra at the Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts. In 2007 and 2008 he served as Cultural Ambassador to India performing concerts of American music sponsored by the US Embassy which included performances at the American Center Auditoriums of New Delhi and Mumbai.
Mr. Krieger has recorded numerous electric cello works for New World Records, Vienna Modern Masters, Capstone, Innova, O.O. Discs and Ablaze Records. A recording of the late Donald Erb’s Suddenly It’s Evening on New World Records received rave reviews from the Cleveland Plain Dealer and Fanfare Magazine. His most recent recorded work, Night Chains and Night Canticle by Douglas Knehans, available on Ablaze Records, has received critical acclaim from the Audiophile Audition Web Magazine. CDs and downloads are available at Amazon and iTunes, and can also be heard on Pandora.
by michael gatonska
Mon Oct 28, 2013 7:01 pm
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Graphic Leaf Scores - the Mediterranean Series

A few of my most recent graphic music scores that trace leaf shapes from trees in Sicily; they were done while I was an artist-in-residence in Palazzolo Acreide.

Three of them were exhibited in the rare books and maps room of the Museo dei Viaggiatori (Travellers Museum), which I thought was pretty neat.
by michael gatonska
Fri Oct 25, 2013 12:37 pm
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Re: Pruning a crabapple

I'm not an expert on prunning but if it was me- I'd just keep pruning it every year. It's clearly very vigorous and "wants" to grow up but it shouldn't be too difficult to shape it as desired.
by Joe
Sat Nov 09, 2013 7:56 am
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Re: Delta National Forest Part I Sweetgum Natural Research A

Okay that monster sweetgum is begging for a merged photo:

by Rand
Sat Nov 09, 2013 3:16 pm
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Delta National Forest Part I Sweetgum Natural Research Area

NTS- Delta National Forest is the only remaining tract of Bottomland Forest in Ms that one existed all along the River. The Forest contains 60,898 acres of typical Bottomland species of trees. I visited the Sweetgum Research Natural Area located on the northern end of the Forest near campsite 6. Most of the Forest Canopy around this area was in the 120's but in the Research Area it reached mid 130's. I plan to come back in the winter and do a more in depth study of this fantastic place. The Forest here is very similar to Congaree in South Carolina. One difference there are no Conifer species are growing here, maybe Cedar. The other two Research Areas may have trees the same age and size. It will take a couple of trips to get to all these different areas. Delta NF is approximately 6-7 miles wide and 20 miles long.
The Green Ash-Overcup Oak-Sweetgum Research Natural Areas within the Delta National Forest are rare examples of a pristine bottomlands hardwood forest. I just went to the Sweetgum Area for some data on them. Sunflower Management Area is throughout the Forest so a Daily Permit is required for usage. There are lots of Hunting and Fishing activities as well as a few Campsites which I will stay at in the future.
Let’s take a look at the Forest coming in from one of the Check-in stations on the northeast side. The next photo is of Campsite 6 which is on the northeast corner of the Sweetgum Research Area. The third photo shows an ATV trail that runs east to west on the north end of the area. Let’s get to the Trees. The Sweetgum Research Area is a 40 acre tract and I only walked around in maybe a quarter of it. Many other species are growing here but the dominate tree was big Sweetgums. The first tree I measured just off the trail was only 122.5' tall with a CBH of 11' 8". Just to get a feel of my TruPulse 200 and my Prostaff 440. It's the first time I've used them both to measure trees. I then spied a whopper just south of this one. I'll call it Sweetgum 1, I was OMG! The CBH was 14' 7.5" and the Height was 135.5'. I also did a Crown Spread of 66' x 103.5' A real beast and up to then the tallest and largest Sweetgum that I had ever measured! I stayed at that tree what seemed like forever, I was stunned by its presence. South and a little west of this beast was another, it measured 13' 4 and had a Height to 136.5' another record! Since I was just scouting the area I went back to the Campsite and followed the ATV trail west for .5 miles. The Forest is filled with trees in the 120 class and I measured a few other species. A nice Willow Oak of 124.5' with a CBH of 12' 6", another Sweetgum to 126' with a CBH of 13'7", also a Overcup Oak to 121.5' with a CBH of 11' 4'. I was getting hungry so I walked back to the Campsite and had lunch. I then went back over to the Researh Area for one more look at that area and spied a MONSTER even larger than my biggest of the day. I was OMG! again, this tree was massive! It measured CBH 17' 1", Height to 135.5' and Crown Spread 52' x 84'. The mass went way up the trunk, this was one big Sweetgum! I must have stayed at this tree for at least an hour and hated to leave it but it was gettting late. The Forest is filled with Sweetgum, Willow Oak, Water Oak, Water Hickory, Mockernut Hickory, Honey Locust, Overcup Oak, Scarlet Oak, and Nuttall Oak. The understory had much Hornbeam and large Saw Palmetto was everywhere!! To be continued- Larry
by Larry Tucei
Sat Nov 09, 2013 12:26 pm
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Song of Norway Spruce, April 2014

Location: South Windsor
Date: April 11, 2014
Time: 11:30 a.m.
State: CT
Description: late morning soundscape recording at edge marshland
Habitat: agricultural/along Connecticut River/ deciduous along river
VoxType: late morning
Category: soundscape
Sample rate: 48k 24 bit
Microphone pattern: Double MS stereo-2 channel; 150 °
Take# 1
Anthrophony: passing automobile
Biophony: wood frogs
Weather: sunny
Temp: 61 fahrenheit
Humidity: 84%
Wind: 8-16 mph, gust up to 30 mph
GPS: Lat/Lon: Lat/Lon: 41.85°N 72.62°W Elevation: 59 ft
Recordist: Michael Gatonska
Notes: homemade Mic suspension with windjammer/monitored with headphones.
by michael gatonska
Sun Apr 13, 2014 5:46 pm
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Re: Very Large Rock Elm (Ulmus thomasii) in Merrickville

This notable tree is now immortalized as a work of art by well-known Nature artist and friend Aleta Karstad.
http://karstaddailypaintings.blogspot.c ... s36-x.html
by wrecsvp
Fri Apr 11, 2014 7:13 am
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Martha's Vineyard

I was fortunate enough to visit the island of Martha's Vineyard. It is not a site for tall trees. I doubt there's a tree on the island that can even crack 90 feet. It is dominated by pitch pines in most areas and an assortment of oaks in others. The hilltops have stunted oak growth, dominated by white oak, black oak, red oak, scarlet oak and hybrids as well as another oak I couldn't positively id. These 250-300 foot elevation trees look much like the trees on the 5,000 to 5,500 foot ridges in the southern Appalachians. The first photos are from Menemsha Hills.
Picture 042.JPG
Picture 043.JPG Picture 047.JPG Picture 051.JPG
The towns have some large trees but they are mostly exotic. I was amazed at how few sugar maples and tuliptrees were present. Picture 025.JPG Picture 024.JPG
This next pagoda is also from 1837, just a half mile away, and it's a whopper, most certainly the largest tree on the island, perhaps the tallest at ~80-85'. It appeared to top 18' cbh. Picture 071.JPG
Copper beeches are beautiful trees. This one looks like 17' cbh. Picture 066.JPG Picture 065.JPG
This is the largest native tree I saw. It's not tall but very stout with a nice spread. Picture 067.JPG
Here's the rare hybrid lighthouse/baobab Picture 032.JPG
White pines were only present in two locations and were planted and still very young. They hadn't topped 70 feet. Norway spruce and Norway maples are common. The spruce may be the tallest trees...either the spruce or the pagoda. An exotic maple is common as well. My pictures didn't come out on that species.
by bbeduhn
Fri Aug 12, 2011 1:43 pm
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Re: Caledon State Park, VA

Devin- Wow those Poplars are huge! I wonder what their height and girth would be? Good photos and I love the Fall shot! Larry
by Larry Tucei
Fri Oct 03, 2014 8:31 pm
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Re: Caledon State Park, VA

Boy, that's some thick, old timber in the first picture.
by Rand
Fri Oct 03, 2014 9:19 pm
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Re: Caledon State Park, VA

My wife and kids and I were there in July. I wish we could have spent more time there, but we were on somewhat of a schedule. It is a cool place. There were several Hummingbird moths on that bush that is in the one picture. In other areas, there were some Gold Finches and some butterflies that I don't think that I had ever seen before.
by tclikesbigtrees
Sat Oct 04, 2014 12:22 am
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The General Greene Cypress-Congaree


On the way to visit family over the weekend I stopped briefly by Cong to explore a portion of one of the newer additions to the park. Over the last few years Cong has expanded by several thousand acres, most of it second growth, but with scattered remnant cypress trees mixed in. There is one cypress that is reported to have the largest circumference of any in the park. I remember Larry Tucei asking me to measure this tree a while ago.

I had gotten directions to the large cypress tree from John Grego, president of the Friends of Congaree Swamp. The trail that I followed runs along an old causeway from the 1700's that leads to the river and in those days, to a ferry to cross the river. After walking for a little while, I saw it. Sitting in a grove of younger cypress and tupleo trees stands the General Greene Cypress, named for General Nathanael Greene, who was active in the area during the Revolutionary War. The cypress has a large buttress that leads up to a broken top. It's because of the broken top that it wasn't logged 100+ years ago when other trees were cut, including two similar sized trees that are now large stumps behind it.

The stats are CBH: 29' 1"
Height: 93.5'

So the tree scores 443 points with no crown spread added. I'll have to get that next time but the tree should easily be over 450 points. I think it may be a few feet taller as well. Everything was still in full leaf. This tree is now the largest girthed tree confirmed in Congaree and is the largest girthed forest grown tree measured in SC.



by Tyler
Mon Sep 29, 2014 11:59 pm
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Big Move

by Lucas
Tue Oct 28, 2014 8:22 pm
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Re: Klamath/Siskiyou Mountain Diversity


Man!! Nice post! Welcome aboard! Thanks for sharing those eye-popping images. The Siskiyous are some really neat mountains.

Dan Miles
by Ranger Dan
Fri Oct 31, 2014 3:34 pm
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Re: Klamath/Siskiyou Mountain Diversity

Devin- Niiice Ponderosa's those are very large and the Foxtail looks ancient!!! Look forward to more posting's from that area. Welcome to NTS. Larry
by Larry Tucei
Fri Oct 31, 2014 10:42 am
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