Post Type: Field Notes

Field Notes

Field Notes: What’s in the Woods Today? Jan. 23, 2018

January 23, 2018 - by Area Forester Lisa Deaton English Ivy English Ivy is a non-native species introduced to North America by European settlers.  In the woods, it is often found near old home sites and cemeteries.  While many homeowners consider it an attractive ground cover in landscaped yards, English ivy can deliver a double whammy in the forest.  It competes with trees and other plants for water, nutrients, sunshine and space on the... Read More

Field Notes

Field Notes: What’s in the Woods Today? Jan. 10, 2018

January 10, 2018 - by  Area Forester Lisa Deaton Snack Bars for Birds Winter is a time of year when people start to notice damage to their trees.  Yellow-bellied sapsuckers are a member of the woodpecker family, and they can drill an alarming number of holes into a single tree in search of sap and insects.  This is a large yellow-poplar in Gloucester County.             While the holes are... Read More

Field Notes

Field Notes: What’s in the Woods Today? Dec. 27, 2017

December 27, 2017 - by Area Forester Lisa Deaton Creek Treasures An important skill for foresters is hopping across creeks without falling in, especially during cold weather.  Last week, I was mapping creeks alongside a cutover to assist a landowner with a Riparian Buffer Tax Credit application.  Wooded buffers along streams, rivers and the Chesapeake Bay are called riparian forests and help protect our water quality.  Virginia landowners can receive a tax credit for... Read More

Field Notes

Field Notes: A Galling History

December 19, 2017 - by Urban Forest Conservationist Jim McGlone While leading a forest hike with a landowner and group of her friends, I was brought to a small group of pin oaks that had many of the growths pictured here. The landowner was concerned that it was a disease that would spread and kill all her trees. This growth, and others like it, are called galls.  Galls form when an insect, usually a small... Read More

Field Notes

Field Notes: What’s in the Woods Today? Dec. 12, 2017

December 12, 2017 - by Area Forester Lisa Deaton Lumpy Trees Sometimes trees respond to injuries or stress (such as a virus, fungus, mold, insects) by growing wood “burls.”  While they look funny on the outside, the wood grain on the inside can be beautiful and is prized by woodworkers. The photograph at the top of this article is my 6-foot tall supervisor standing next to a white oak stump with numerous burls. The... Read More

Field Notes

Field Notes: What’s in the Woods Today? Dec. 5, 2017

December 5, 2017 - by Area Forester Lisa Deaton Baby Longleaf Last week was finally time to plant a longleaf pine project.  The landowner had spent over a year preparing a 17-acre cutover site for these seedlings.  Longleaf pine is known for its very long needles, huge pine cones, very strong “heart pine” lumber, and the naval stores it can produce.  The longleaf seedlings are in the planters’ bags. As you can see, the... Read More

Field Notes

Field Notes: What’s in the Woods Today? Nov. 28, 2017

November 28, 2017 - by Area Forester Lisa Deaton ‘Tis the Season!   Trees provide us with a colorful show every autumn, and then reveal yet more “decorations” once the leaves are gone. Mistletoe is a parasitic plant that grows in the tops of trees. The American holly berries are ripe. Partridgeberry is one of my favorites for its fall berries and white flowers in the spring. Running cedar can form quite a carpet,... Read More

Field Notes

Field Notes: What’s in the Woods Today? Nov. 21, 2017

November 21, 2017 - by Area Forester Lisa Deaton A Day of Double Takes It is still close enough to Halloween that I thought I saw a ghost in the woods last week.   Upon looking closer, it was just a tarp, but it was hanging very high in this tree.  It protected a hunter’s tree stand at one time. Then a bright red dot on a yellow-poplar caught my eye. I think it... Read More

Field Notes

Field Notes: What’s in the Woods Today? Nov. 14, 2017

November 14, 2017 - by Area Forester Lisa Deaton Mushrooms! When you work in the woods every day, it can be joyful to see something new.  After the rain last week, quite a variety of mushrooms sprouted.  The most unusual one I saw was hairy on top. These mushrooms were so tiny I almost missed them. This mushroom is keeping company with a small army of lichens, and perhaps fungi, on the decaying log... Read More

Field Notes

Field Notes: What’s in the Woods Today? Nov. 8, 2017

November 8, 2017 - Snack Time by VDOF Area Forester Lisa Deaton Last week I was asked to see if a 16-year-old loblolly pine plantation had grown large enough for a commercial thinning. I was perplexed to find what looked like pieces of honeycomb on the ground.  There were no large hollow trees nearby, just young, solid pine trees. Then I noticed that there were several pieces of it scattered around a nearby hole... Read More