Two "cedars" for the price of one

Places in which the trees are not spectacular, but represent an unusual assemblage or exhibit unusual character.

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#1)  Two "cedars" for the price of one

Postby wisconsitom » Fri Feb 19, 2016 1:31 pm

Door, Kewaunee, and Manitowoc Counties in NE Wisconsin contain some of the best Thuja occidentalis in the state, likely the world.  The dolomite bedrock supplies all the calcium and magnesium this species so likes.  Therefor, it is not at all unusual to see fine stands of this tree throughout this area.  But where Highway 42 goes up into Door county-actually just before that, while still in Kewaunee Cty, is a most unusual area.  The limestone is right at the surface, and while this always favors the Thuja, this area is extremely odd because along with that tree are numerous Juniperus virginiana, almost as if that tree had the exact same preferences.  Otherwise, they seem to occupy opposite ends of the scale, insofar as preferences, needs, etc.  The juniper, of course, can be found just about anywhere, including very dry locations, while the Thuja is very well-known for its tolerance of high water tables.  I have never----I really do mean never, seen these trees together, but for a few miles in this area, they are all over each other.

I don't know if anyone else appreciates that this is an odd pairing, but it jumps right out at me whenever we're cruising up that way.  Just a bit further north...or south for that matter, and it's all Thuja again, with its usual associates.  But for these few miles, this odd combo really has taken hold.
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#2)  Re: Two "cedars" for the price of one

Postby ElijahW » Sat Feb 20, 2016 10:38 am

Tom,

I'm ignorant, for the most part, on soil types and individual species preferences, but a couple of places in NY come to mind that feature both Common juniper and Northern white cedar.  I've seen both species growing together in the Plattsburgh area, not far from Lake Champlain, and on Wellesley Island, between Alexandria Bay, NY, and the Canadian border.  I would guess more spots could be found in northern NY where bedrock is close to the surface, as well as in southern Ontario, CA.  For the most part, I've seen the same patterns you have though, and do not often see the two species in close proximity.

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
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#3)  Re: Two "cedars" for the price of one

Postby Matt Markworth » Sat Feb 20, 2016 11:42 am

I don't get to see native Thuja occidentalis very often, but above Clifton Gorge/Little Miami River in Ohio they co-mingle with Juniperus virginiana. The trail from there down into John Bryan State Park is probably my favorite hike in the state.

Matt
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#4)  Re: Two "cedars" for the price of one

Postby Erik Danielsen » Mon Feb 22, 2016 12:51 am

The Niagara Gorge just below the falls is another spot where both cedars grow together, though in this case usually in their stunted cliff-hanging forms, including some very old gnarled specimens of each. Tom, any really good Thuja sites are good to hear about- I'm always wondering where its height potential truly maxes out. I don't know if we've broken 90' yet, though a number of sites reach the low 80s. Manitoulin Island is the best I've heard of for overall size.
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#5)  Re: Two "cedars" for the price of one

Postby wisconsitom » Mon Feb 22, 2016 10:35 am

Thanks fellows.  So this odd pairing is perhaps not quite so odd after all!
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