Thursday, April 11, 2013

Leaves

The temperature has gone back to more the more seasonal 60s, but those two days of heat were enough to cause almost every tree to flower and begin to leaf out.

Remember what the red maple in front of my house looked like just 7 days ago? Well, here it is today: pollinated flowers are all developing green samaras, those tight red clusters from last week are now long enough to rustle in the wind.
Red Maple Fruit Developing
And not only the maple fruit is making an appearance. All of a sudden the leaves have broken bud as well.
Red Maple leaf bud with maturing fruit
It amazes me how quickly things can change in the plant world with a little bit of heat and a nice heavy rain.

In fact, the maples were not the only trees to change over the past week. Just walking Diamond Dog after work today I noticed all the trees in the neighborhood were in bloom.

Sorry for the fuzzy phone photo, but the Norway Maple is in bloom

Some escaped Forsythia growing along the railroad tracks
Dogwood

I also happened upon a shrub (small tree?) growing in a wasteland area that I think is a type of Aesculus. It had a flower stalk already, although the flowers weren't close enough to opening to guess the color. I will have to watch it over the next week or so to see if I can identify it. Unless one of you has an idea?
A closeup of the flower structure


The whole plant
And finally, there is this tree. I got excited for the catkins but cannot for the life of me ID it. I know I have seen it before. I know I know it. Its like when you forget a word and its on the tip of your tongue. So someone solve this mystery for me!
what i assume are pollen structures

a closeup of the leaves and reproductive structure
the whole tree.




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