Clove Lakes Park, Staten Island

Moderators: edfrank, dbhguru

#1)  Clove Lakes Park, Staten Island

Postby Erik Danielsen » Mon Dec 21, 2015 12:43 am

Clove Lakes Park is located in the northern portion of Staten Island, not far from Allison park, which I reported on recently. Its name derives from a dutch term meaning cleft, and the park is characterized by a gorge of sorts containing a series of small lakes, finally leveling out at its northwestern end. Much of the park is relatively narrow, with open land and houses right up to the edge of the gorge. This exposure, possibly in combination with the soils resulting from the underlying serpentine geology, may play a role in the relatively lesser heights achieved (looking mainly to tulips as the indicator species) here and in similar parks like Allison Pond and Corson's Brook on Staten Island by comparison to similar age and diameter tulips in the sheltered valley of Inwood Hill Park in Manhattan.

The northwestern portion of the park, cut off by a busy two-lane road from the bulk of the park, is about half forested ravine and half mowed lawn with trees. I spent the afternoon of saturday 12/19 measuring the trees of this northern section. The open lawn is the home of the previously mentioned Clove Lakes Colossus, an enormous tuliptree that is almost undoubtedly the current NYS champion tuliptree, regardless of what the official list states. Earlier this summer I measured this tree to 123.5' tall and 23.47'cbh. With the leaves off, I was this time able to locate an even higher branch and push the height up to 126.6 feet.

The Colossus is not the only big tulip at Clove Lakes. A paved path runs from Forest Ave along the wooded ravine. Right at the beginning of the path, choked with english ivy and barely 15 feet from a house, stand twin tuliptrees measuring 109.3'/15.7'cbh on the right and 108.2'/15.5'cbh on the left. Large tulips (and a pair of nice younger beech) dot the route along the path and stream. Aside from such standout specimens, most of the forest is noticeably young, probably less than 70 years for most trees. There's a single large sycamore with multiple leaders down by the stream that appears to be around 5'dbh but there was someone being shady on the root buttress, so I will have to get the measurement later. A few large oaks also appear on the slopes as the gorge deepens, and the tulips get taller. Near the end of the path where the road bisects the park stands a large beech as well. Measurements for this section:

Tuliptree
126.6/23.47'cbh (the Clove Lakes Colossus)
126/13.1'cbh
120.8/12.3'cbh
120.4/12.9'cbh
109.3/15.7'cbh
108.2/15.5'cbh
Sycamore
111.9/>4'dbh
Northern Red Oak
105.7/11.4'cbh
105
104.4/10.9'cbh
102.9/7.2'cbh
96/12.7'cbh
Beech
99.8/11.3'cbh
94.2/8.3'cbh
Pin Oak
99.8
93.9
White Oak
99.1/9.3'cbh
95.6/8.4'cbh
Black Oak
92.9

The stream is fed by a narrow lake that ends in a wetland filled in with phragmites; in this section there are several black alder with beautiful shapes, not very old. I measured the tallest-looking to 78.2'.

The lawn section is mostly planted white pine and red oak, with a few specimen trees thrown in. I measured a few of the pines:
104.4/7.5'cbh
102.6/7.6'cbh
102.2/5.9'cbh

These seem quite young and have plenty of room to grow. The first two sit right up against the edge of the forest, which may help to spur future growth. The bulk of the park is still waiting to be measured. A brief previous visit showed me tall beech and oaks that I look forward to measuring. The gorge deepens and widens in this section, which bodes well for height.

(edited to correct species ID)
Attachments
IMG_1147.JPG
The 126'/13.1'cbh tuliptree.
IMG_1150.JPG
The 15'cbh tuliptree twins at the start of the trail.
IMG_1152.JPG
The Sycamore and its accessory juvenile delinquent
IMG_1162.JPG
11.3'cbh beech, hollow on the other side.
IMG_1154.JPG
Beautiful black alder in the wetlands
Last edited by Erik Danielsen on Thu Mar 31, 2016 10:24 pm, edited 2 times in total.

For this message the author Erik Danielsen has received Likes - 6:
Bart Bouricius, bbeduhn, Jess Riddle, Larry Tucei, tsharp, Will Blozan
User avatar
Erik Danielsen
 
Posts: 545
Joined: Mon Mar 17, 2014 6:46 pm
Location: NYC
Has Liked: 239 times
Has Been Liked: 292 times
Print view this post

#2)  Re: Clove Lakes Park, Staten Island

Postby ElijahW » Mon Dec 21, 2015 7:43 am

Erik,

Very nice.  Have you seen any black oak with the scarlet, white, and northern red?  When I've come across scarlet oak in the South, I usually find it with other members of the red oak family:  northern and southern red, black, and blackjack.  We pretty much just have planted specimen scarlet oaks in the CNY, and I always enjoyed seeing it in color in the Blue Ridge of Virginia when I lived there.  Anyways, thanks for sharing,

Elijah
"There is nothing in the world to equal the forest as nature made it. The finest formal forest, the most magnificent artificially grown woods, cannot compare with the grandeur of primeval woodland." Bob Marshall, Recreational Limitations to Silviculture in the Adirondacks
User avatar
ElijahW
 
Posts: 518
Joined: Sun Jun 26, 2011 5:04 pm
Location: Liverpool, NY
Has Liked: 209 times
Has Been Liked: 250 times
Print view this post

#3)  Re: Clove Lakes Park, Staten Island

Postby Erik Danielsen » Mon Dec 21, 2015 8:13 am

Elijah,

Black oak is pretty common here on the island, and in fact I did measure one here that I skipped over while writing the original post. I'll add it in above. In the red oak group willow oak is also present (the only native population in NYS), blackjack is common on dryer sites, scrub oak and basket oak are present but uncommon. There's also quite a bit of hybridizing, with blackjack-black oak hybrids called Bush's Oak the most common. In the white oaks, swamp white oak, chestnut oak, and post oak are all common enough. Red, white, and black tend to dominate any forest along with chestnut to a lesser degree.
User avatar
Erik Danielsen
 
Posts: 545
Joined: Mon Mar 17, 2014 6:46 pm
Location: NYC
Has Liked: 239 times
Has Been Liked: 292 times
Print view this post

#4)  Re: Clove Lakes Park, Staten Island

Postby Lucas » Mon Dec 21, 2015 2:42 pm

Erik Danielsen wrote:Elijah,

In the white oaks, swamp white oak, chestnut oak, and post oak are all common enough. Red, white, and black tend to dominate any forest along with chestnut to a lesser degree.


By basket oak, I assume you mean Q michauxii. Is it wild or planted?
We travel the Milky way together, trees and men. - John Muir
User avatar
Lucas
 
Posts: 645
Joined: Tue Jul 29, 2014 12:55 pm
Has Liked: 0 times
Has Been Liked: 125 times
Print view this post

#5)  Re: Clove Lakes Park, Staten Island

Postby Erik Danielsen » Mon Dec 21, 2015 2:56 pm

For some reason I thought Basket Oak was a less common species in the red oak group with a much more limited distribution, but it does look like michauxii is correct. My understanding is that it does occur here naturally, as it was recorded as present in barrens communities on the island from a fairly early point in its documented history. I have so far just found one small specimen in the interior of a forested park.
User avatar
Erik Danielsen
 
Posts: 545
Joined: Mon Mar 17, 2014 6:46 pm
Location: NYC
Has Liked: 239 times
Has Been Liked: 292 times
Print view this post

#6)  Re: Clove Lakes Park, Staten Island

Postby bbeduhn » Tue Dec 22, 2015 9:55 am

The heights are ordinary but the girths are extraordinary. 20'+ tulips are a rarity anywhere! That's a nice collection of 15 footers.  Urban forests have been turning up respectable numbers in many cities. Leave no grove unchecked.
User avatar
bbeduhn
 
Posts: 946
Joined: Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:23 pm
Location: Asheville, NC
Has Liked: 1096 times
Has Been Liked: 468 times
Print view this post

#7)  Re: Clove Lakes Park, Staten Island

Postby Erik Danielsen » Thu Jan 14, 2016 1:54 pm

Sunday 1/10 I visited the great Clove Lakes Colossus once again to measure crown spread. This tree's maximum crown spread is 117', and an Average Crown Spread of 99.6'. With a height of 126.6' and circumference of 23.5', the Clove Lakes Colossus totals out at 433 AF points.

The currently listed NY state champion tuliptree is a specimen nicknamed the "Spuyten Duyvil Giant", a great hollow tree in the Bronx with 386 points. With a gap of 47 points it is clear that the Clove Lakes Colossus properly takes the crown. I may have a chance to measure the Spuyten Duyvil GIant (located on private property) this weekend. It's a beautiful tree in photos, but given its location (not in a sheltered high-competition site like the trees at Inwood Hill) I suspect the height might turn out to be a bit less than the 142' measurement in 2014. We shall see!

For this message the author Erik Danielsen has received Likes - 2:
Jess Riddle, tsharp
User avatar
Erik Danielsen
 
Posts: 545
Joined: Mon Mar 17, 2014 6:46 pm
Location: NYC
Has Liked: 239 times
Has Been Liked: 292 times
Print view this post

#8)  Re: Clove Lakes Park, Staten Island

Postby Erik Danielsen » Wed Mar 30, 2016 4:17 pm

This morning I spent a few hours measuring in the larger portion of Clove Lakes Park. This southern portion is shaped like an hourglass bent to the west, and a high ridge runs down the western side while on the east it slopes down to an elongated pair of lakes that run the length of the park and continue the waterway of the stream and lake in the previously reported on portion of the park. Along the western and southern portion of the park, on the ridge, is relatively dry forest dominated by oaks, mainly red with some white and in places black being dominant. Hiding in here are some superlative hybrid oaks Kershner wrote about, but I'll have to wait for leaf-out to find those. This is mostly regrowth of less than two centuries, with some inclusion of exotics and a very disturbed understory. There are a couple more vigorous patches near the southern border, but it's on the eastern slope that the forest becomes particularly interesting.

White oak and sweetgum pretty much drop out as one moves north on the eastern slope, and a heavily red-oak forest dominates. The trees here are mostly ~5'cbh, spindly reaching trees. As one approaches the narrow point of the hourglass older trees and more diversity begin to push heights upward. I stopped to measure the first large tulip I encountered and several trees immediately surrounding it.
Tuliptree
113.2/>3'dbh
Red Oak
110.1
106.5
Black Oak
109.2
102.3

Continuing further up the trail, red oak continued to run the show. Measuring mostly trees on the steep slope overlooking the lake, eight exceeded 105', which is exceptional for such a short transect in forests here- I'm used to red oaks averaging closer to 100' and a few maxing out from 105-110. A tall sassafras was also measured.
Red Oak
112.3
111.6
110.1
109.1
108
107.1
106.5
106
103.2
Sassafras
95.5

At nearly the narrow point of the hourglass, however, the slope curves to become mostly north-facing where several trails intersect and the forest suddenly diversifies. I suspect this small area is the longest-undisturbed section of the park, due to the size and diversity of native species, and it's possible that the topography of that section of slope provides richer soils and more moisture. A few tall tulips hold court with an impressive elm and a younger but taller sibling, two hickory species, more red oaks, and the most fantastic beech I've met in NYC so far. This is the densest cluster of tall trees I've measured on Staten Island. At the northern edge of this cluster the forest transitions into a much more disturbed forest with black cherry, red maple, pawlonia, and others- of which I measured a couple. A previous visit with the uineye rangefinder I ended up returning yielded exciting numbers, so I was glad to visit with the old bushnell and get some more solid measurements.
Tuliptree
126.4/~4'dbh
Black Birch
93.1/4.2'cbh
American Elm
107.9
106.2/9'cbh
Pignut Hickory
124.4/4.8'cbh
Bitternut Hickory
118.5/7.1'cbh
113.1/4.4'cbh
103.6/4.6'cbh
American Beech
114'/8.2'cbh
Red Oak
112'
111.2
109.6
107.1/4.4'cbh
105.3
103.7
Sassafras
100.4
Black Cherry
102.5/5.2'cbh
Red Maple
91/5.7'cbh
Attachments
IMG_1720.jpg
For illustration's sake I added colored dots- from left to right green is the tall beech, red the tall Pignut, yellow the tallest Bitternut and blue the measured tulip.
Last edited by Erik Danielsen on Wed Mar 30, 2016 5:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.

For this message the author Erik Danielsen has received Likes - 2:
Jess Riddle, Will Blozan
User avatar
Erik Danielsen
 
Posts: 545
Joined: Mon Mar 17, 2014 6:46 pm
Location: NYC
Has Liked: 239 times
Has Been Liked: 292 times
Print view this post

#9)  Re: Clove Lakes Park, Staten Island

Postby dbhguru » Wed Mar 30, 2016 5:28 pm

Hi Erik,

  Another fine report on NYC. We thank you. Your black birch makes number 650 in the database. Muchas gracias.

Bob
Robert T. Leverett
Co-founder and Executive Director
Native Native Tree Society
Co-founder and President
Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest
User avatar
dbhguru
 
Posts: 4017
Joined: Mon Mar 08, 2010 10:34 pm
Location: Florence, Massachusetts
Has Liked: 4 times
Has Been Liked: 1068 times
Print view this post

#10)  Re: Clove Lakes Park, Staten Island

Postby Erik Danielsen » Thu Mar 31, 2016 10:23 pm

Just can't keep myself away from a good tree spot when I sense there's more to measure... today I started on the path at the base of the slope just below the cluster of tall trees. Here a stream transitions into a small lake, with a small wetland formed by hummocks around the roots of black alder (Alnus glutinosa). When I wrote the first post in this topic I actually mistook these alders for Black Gum, and Pin Oak for Scarlet- all four species being pretty unfamiliar where I had just moved from in WNY. That in mind, some measurements from along the path-
Black Alder
86.8
82.6
American Sycamore
101
Black Willow
87
Pin Oak
103.2

I moved from there up into the cluster of tall trees to measure the other two tulips and a few more oaks. At the interface with the more disturbed section of forest I measured a black birch that just didn't seem right- and of course, this also was black alder, further up onto the dry slope than I had expected. Among the tall trees Ironwood (Carpinus caroliniana) is present as an understory tree, so I measured the ones I found- based on Elijah's NY max list, these (and the Alders) are the tallest of their kind measured so far in NY state. All were under 8"dbh.
Black Alder
84.7
Ironwood
50.5
38
25.1
Tuliptree
119
118.2
Red Oak
115
111.8

From here I happened to look across the creek to the steep, vine-choked slope on the opposite side, the extreme eastern edge of the park. A narrow emergent crown floated tantalizingly above an elegant trunk, a tulip. I made my way across the creek and through the briars, to the base of the tuliptree I had seen, and then up the much steeper slope to its crest to have a look around. At the top was a dryer forest, still mostly red oak, but more black and white oak entering again, and plenty of sassafras. I measured a couple that stuck out- one with an enormous burl on its trunk just a hair below the state max height. Canopy height up on top was modest, but red oaks anchored in the very steep slope rose to respectable heights, almost a pure stand on the slope. The ground at the top was littered with chestnut deadwood, probably leftover tops from salvage logging. Glacial erratics (and the cliff-edge location) suggest that section never saw the plow, and was likely permitted to regrow following the island's near-clearcut during the revolutionary war. It's reasonable to expect that same slope (being chestnut's preferred niche) would have looked almost the same as it does now, except with chestnut bark and leaves on all the tall sinuous trunks rather than red oak, before the blight came and salvage logging followed.
Tuliptree
122.4
Red Oak
110.8
109.7
Sassafras
102.5
100.9

Next I ventured back up into the northern part of the hourglass, along the western ridge, where disturbed regrowth is scattered with pockets of white pine and other conifers that suggest specimen/landscaping plantings moreso than timber plantings- I suspect the site was home to an estate at one point. Among the white pines I also met an unfamiliar tight-barked hickory and brought home a budding twig to confirm mockernut hickory as a species I can now ID. The one remaining hemlock is not in terrible shape. Near the redcedar was one more ironwood, this one seemingly quite a bit older than the ones down in the tall forest and near 12"dbh.
Ironwood
38.9
Mockernut Hickory
83.2
Eastern Redcedar
77.4
Eastern Hemlock
84.5
Norway Spruce
86.5
White Pine
104
101.3

Currently the RHI5= 119.7 and RHI10=113.5. Not bad for NYC!

For this message the author Erik Danielsen has received Likes :
Jess Riddle
User avatar
Erik Danielsen
 
Posts: 545
Joined: Mon Mar 17, 2014 6:46 pm
Location: NYC
Has Liked: 239 times
Has Been Liked: 292 times
Print view this post

Next

Return to New York

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest