Adventures in Trace Fork #5: Any professional botanists in the crowd?

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Blog entry by Tony posted 05-29-2009 07:27 PM 660 reads 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 4: Lessons in humility Part 5 of Adventures in Trace Fork series Part 6: After the flood, and a correction »

In a recent blog entry, I stated I was about 95% sure a tree I came across was Cucumbertree (Magnolia acuminata). Well I’m now 100% certain…that I was wrong. After further study, I am now certain that it is NOT Cucumbertree. So, the photos go back into my digital library of unknown specimens.

Tomorrow morning, I head back into the wet forests for further study. The learning curve continues, and I am having so much fun!

3 comments so far

View Bureaucrat's profile


18337 posts in 3069 days

#1 posted 05-30-2009 05:04 AM

Trial and error is the way we’ve learned every since we came out of the trees (or the Garden). It sounds like you’re having fun trying to find the answer. Good Luck!

-- Gary D. Stoughton, WI

View Tony's profile


56 posts in 2773 days

#2 posted 06-01-2009 01:16 AM

Well, I was wrong when I said I was wrong!! The tree is indeed Cucumbertree. I went back and found that tree this weekend, and took my 20x pocket magnifier. I studied the end buds and the bundle scars, I sliced open a twig and studied the pith, and the conclusion was…don’t jump to conclusions! This is twice now I’ve followed the clues to identify a species, then changed my mind due to variations, only to later find out my original identification was correct. Again, I am humbled by the vast complexity of nature.

View miles125's profile


2180 posts in 3423 days

#3 posted 06-01-2009 01:22 AM

Could be a pickle tree. Which is a close relative of the cucumber tree. :)

-- "The way to make a small fortune in woodworking- start with a large one"

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