Thursday, March 26, 2015

Dichotomous key (V) - Bud scars

Leaf scars have personality. No doubt about it. With a nice little bonnet, top hat, or beehive hair do to cap off a gnomish face, each monster marches a terrifying procession along the length of their twigs. These tiny monsters grin out at the unsuspecting world. And lo, a peripatetic naturalist pauses to discover their intricate world. Sam and I spent some time asking these trees what their names were and boy were we discovered. Each face is a leaf scar, the outline of where the stalk of a leaf connects to twig. The dots and features that give the face its facey-ness collectively form the vascular bundles, which are composed of xylem and phloem (imagine cutting a celery stalk in cross section). 

(Black locust) Marrowzodufia Blugly the Dwarf

(Butternut) Pompuzador the bonnet keeper of spiggetiezi

(Yellow birch) Joy Doom Happy Stacks

(Cottonwood) Mark Buntly of the Broofing Haws

(Common buckthorn) Ronald the Masked Parasitic Jubilee

(Slippery elm) Squirky Bunkles

(Staghorn sumac) Salwall Dimlar the Jay Slorper

(Sugar maple) Starky Cusperbun

(Lilac) Ralphez the woggly-eyed lime top

(Black cherry) ZanKiffle Waffletragedy, aka ZK Waffles in the forests of Burlington

(American beech) Qwayzar Dalooskie

(Bitternut hickory) Ahab Dilbous-Bannister, Purveyor of Simple Fun

(Quaking aspen) Emperor Mewslies of Nostralias
(White ash) The Honorable Wide Collared Professor Kitten Anderson
(Witch-hazel) Slippy Ghoul Grin aka Barbara Butterfields aka Babs Buttfiel

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