Pining for December 10, 2007
The "Guru of Green" at Gorman Nature Center, Steve McKee, made a wonderful key and guide to conifers for his workshop. If you really want a copy- I could probably get it for you. Just contact me by e-mail.
Steve's cheat sheet lists 5 pines (and 24 conifers total) commonly found in our area, but only one pine is listed as native. The White Pine, Pinus strobus is not too difficult to find or identify. It is another soft needled evergreen, and the only one with 5 needles in each leaf bundle. Soon you will be scouting out evergreens and counting the needles like the pros! :)
These trees, called Pinus linus in the forest of Mohican, where they were planted in rows to curb erosion, have become a enchanted place for man and beast alike. White-breasted Nuthatches especially like them, and I hope to be counting up a few of those on the upcoming Mohican CBC. Hope to C-B-C U there!