Proper tree care and management starts with knowing how to correctly identify trees.

Dr. John Ball is a professor and extension specialist in forestry at South Dakota State University who has some strong opinions about tree identification. While I don’t have an exact quote from him, perhaps he will forgive me for paraphrasing one of his comments:

“If you brought your dog to the vet and the first thing he or she said was, “Wow! That’s a fine looking cow you’ve got there”, then you’d probably find another vet.”

Wouldn’t you?

Then why would you enlist the services of a green industry contractor that can’t properly identify trees? Do you know your trees well enough to gauge the tree i.d. skills of the person or contractor you’re hiring?

The difference between a dog and a cow is easily spotted, but what about the differences between say, an apple tree and a maple tree? Or a cypress and a spruce?

Whether you’re a homeowner, a city employee, a landscape contractor, or a certified arborist, it never hurts to brush up on your tree identification skills.

Good news! There is a Basic Tree Identification class scheduled for June 15 at the Center for Urban Horticulture in Seattle.

Check out these other links to resources that can help you learn more about how to identify your trees:

Common Trees of the Pacific Northwest

What Tree is That?