June 14, 2006

Fun with Trees

The other day we were walking home from somewhere or another, and we came across the most beautiful and bizarre tree we had ever seen. It was loaded with clusters of small red, orange, green, and yellow fruit that looked straight out of Willa Wonka's backyard.

Coincidentally, (and luckily for us!) I had just bought a tree identification book from the thrift store the day before. It's the greatest thing ever...
It asks you a series of simple questions that you answer as you would in a Choose Your Own Adventure (i.e. "Does the tree bear cones? If YES go to diagram 7A, OR "Does the tree have scale-like leaves? If YES go to diagram 10D, etc, etc...). Following along, I identified the tree—with a novice/enthusiast's degree of certainty—as a Pacific Madrone.
Yay me!!
Looks like I may have let my enthusiasm get the better of me in my first foray into tree identification. Our friend Anton pointed out the possibility that this may in fact be a Strawberry Tree, and not the Pacific Madrone as I first reported. Strawberries?! On trees!?!?! Well, we know Anton's a smart guy, and word on the street is that he knows his trees, so I did a little research, and I think he's right!
Thanks Anton!

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