The MY Town Hare-Brained Tree Quest

Perhaps you know that the city of Portland, Oregon has a Heritage Tree Program in which over 300 trees have been recognized for their size, age, historical, and/or horticultural significance. Perhaps you’ve also seen that one of our Cycle365-ists has written about his own “Portland Heritage Tree Quest” on his Cycleblaze blogs. If I remember correctly, he succeeded in finding and photographing every one of them.

Now that he’s back from the Croatia/Italy tour, he’s even gone back to revisit a few of them. That’s what gave me the idea to conduct a tree quest of my own, right here in MY Town.

That’s what I did today, and this is the perfect time of year to be doing it. There are almost no leaves left on the trees, which means they have lost their view-blocking qualities. That allows one to see other trees in the distance. Additionally, in wintertime the wooden framework of the trees must stand on their own merit without the adornment of colorful leaves. That’s a lot of pressure.

MY Town does not have a huge variety of trees, nor does it have uniquely beautiful trees. But it does have a LOT of trees. I’m going to display a few of them in the pictures that follow.

Creepy Branch Tree

A closer view of the creepy branches of the Creepy Branch Tree.

God’s Own Christmas Tree

Geometry Symmetry Tree

Humongous Pea Pod Tree

I count no fewer than ten nests in this specimen of Arborus Nesticus. There are trees all around, but very few of them have more than one or two nests. (Worthy of note: in the five months of the year when there are leaves on trees in Minnesota, tree specialist like me would have never seen all those nests.)

Puffy Pillow Pine Tree

Freakishly Long Lower Branch Tree

Telephone Wire Tree (According to the National Arboretum Society, this is the only species that is able to sustain itself by digging its roots into an above ground wire.)

Despite the fact that the sign says “PINE,” this is definitely a BENDY BIRCH.

This is rarest tree on my quest. Shockorama Resisticus is an example of the only tree species in the Western Hemisphere that leans away from electrical wires.

That concludes my tour for today. I’ll update my Hare-Brained Tree Quest as often as necessary, or until I get boo-ed off the stage, so to speak.

Hi. My name is Greg and I ride my bike a lot. That is to say, I ride my bike almost every day. I go on long rides and short rides. Sunny rides, cloudy rides, and rainy rides. I like commuting, errand-running, day-tripping, overnighting, and touring on my bike. I ride on city streets, highways, gravel, single track, and snow with equal enthusiasm. Sometimes I ride fast and sometimes I ride slow. I try to keep my feet on the pedals at stop lights and I do not dismount when I hop up on a curb. I have a roadie bike, a mountain bike and a touring bike. I try to accept any challenge a bike ride can throw at me without complaint. But I don't like bugs.

13 response to "The MY Town Hare-Brained Tree Quest"

  1. By: Bill Stone Posted: November 14, 2020

    Good job on trees! Some of them might even be considered “empty of leaves.”

  2. By: Scooter Posted: November 14, 2020

    I’m especially intrigued by the arborus nesticus. Are those really nests up there? They look like they could be mistletoe to me. You should probably climb up and show us a close-up.

    • By: gregblood Posted: November 15, 2020

      Since both you and Suzanne mentioned mistletoe, I had to do a little research. First I looked online for pictures of mistletoe and, I’ll be darned, they did look somewhat like my picture. I always thought mistletoe was just a plant grown in a garden specifically for the holidays. The second part of my research was to ride back and get a closer look this morning. I zoomed in for a picture (which will be shown in my next post) and clearly saw they were constructions of sticks and leaves.

      Besides, I learned in my online research that mistletoe usually attacks pine and spruce here in Minnesota — not arborus nesticus.

  3. By: Suzanne Posted: November 14, 2020

    Glad you posted this! Just the other day I was thinking trees are most beautiful in winter. I love their naked branches more than their leafy green. They are nice in fall, too, but don’t have the same impact on me.

    I, too, was wondering if that wasn’t mistletoe and not nests up in the branches. We have a lot of that here.

  4. By: Suzanne Posted: November 14, 2020

    P.S. Great pictures – my faves are God’s own Christmas tree and the bendy birch.

  5. By: The Navigator Posted: November 14, 2020

    Thanks for making me laugh with all those hilarious tree names. I love the crazy branch oak – oaks always have so much character.

    I’m pretty sure the telephone wire tree is part of the epiphyte family, too.

    • By: gregblood Posted: November 15, 2020

      In addition to having to do some internet research on mistletoe (thanks to Scott and Suzanne), you made me have to look up the meaning of epiphyte. For such a tree expert as me, it seems like I STILL have a lot to learn.

  6. By: BobinVT Posted: November 15, 2020

    I like Shockorama Resisticus. It looks like your power company got a little over-zealous in it’s trimming.

    • By: gregblood Posted: November 15, 2020

      Are you trying to say that tree isn’t leaning away from the power lines on its own accord? Now I have the same sad feeling I had a couple years ago when I learned there is no Easter Bunny.

      • By: BobinVT Posted: November 15, 2020

        What!?!? Now I’m sad…

  7. By: Rich-Illinois Posted: November 15, 2020

    Quite a nice collection of trees — that is an amazing squirrel colony in the arborus nesticus.
    The branch grown into the power line is an equally amazing photo, I had seen such once but never got a photo of it.
    That is a bird bath under the Geometry tree, at first I though it was one of those lawn geese things.
    Never fails to amaze me how birds take a bath, then turn around sit on the edge, poop in the water, and go right back in. Not a bird fan.
    Once a bird pooped on the hood of my 68 full sized Oldsmobile and the splatter went from front to back and side to side. That took some doing!

    • By: gregblood Posted: November 15, 2020

      Yes, squirrel nests! Thank you! Can you believe some people thought they were mistletoe colonies?

      • By: Rich-Illinois Posted: November 15, 2020

        Wellllll . . . . considering how squirrels seem to . . . . . oh, nevermind. 😉

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