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Arb Notes

If you have wandered around campus lately and happened to look up from your smartphone, you may have noticed that there are massive green and brown things located everywhere. These are called trees, and we have many different species of them here on campus. While I could write a thesis length paper on the various types of trees located here in Northfield, I will narrow it to three; Red Ash (more commonly called green ash) (figure B), Black Walnut (figure A), and Red Pine (figure C).

Green ash trees, fraxinus pennsylvanica, are native here to Minnesota and through- out most of the Eastern United States. They are deciduous trees that can grow up to 25 meters high. They are identifiable due to their distinct grayish-red bark that resembles long fissures, and their short oblong leaves.

Black Walnut trees, juglans nigra, are another native tree that can be found on campus. You’ve probably stepped on and cursed the large greenish-brown walnut seeds that litter the ground this time of year. The bark is black-grey and is deeply furrowed. These trees can get to be almost 40 meters tall.

Red Pine trees, pinust resinosa, are coniferous unlike the other two species. They are native to the northern part of Minnesota but here in the south are a non-native species. The needles grow in bunches and are usually 4 to 7 inches long and are very brittle. The bark at the bottom of the tree is gray and gnarled but toward the top it but becomes flaky with an orange-red coloring.

Next time you happen to look up from your smartphone as you wander around campus, hopefully you will notice and identify more of those massive green and brown objects littered around campus.

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