On Saturday October 26, Michael Wojtech, author of Bark, a field guide to trees of the Northeast, presented a workshop to help participants identify native trees in Eastern New York based on bark types. Michael started out with an indoor class on the characteristics and ecology of bark and, using photos, tested us on how we thought bark on young trees would look on older trees. By knowing the different types of bark – blocky, ropy, vertical strips, smooth, etc. – it was easier to guess how these bark types change over time. After our classroom lesson, we were excited to get outdoors and walk the trails of the Albany Pine Bush to see the different types in nature. We spent over an hour looking at oaks, pines, birches, cherries, maples and others and learning the techniques of bark identification to figure out closely related species like cottonwood, aspen and grey birch. A great time was had by all and we look forward to trying out our new skills with other trees of the area.
For more information about Michael’s bark book and workshops you can visit his website http://www.knowyourtrees.com. We thank him for a very interesting and informative workshop. – Steve Young