Reub's journey

22 April 2010

Friday Shoot-Out: Trees

This is Oregon and Trees R Us. They are 100% of the reason why we live here: it was twelve years ago that John accepted a position in the large and venerable OSU College of Forestry. I love being in the temperate rain forest that is our home.

Trees are a magnificent part of our landscape; almost half of the state is covered by forest, and of that 67% is publicly owned, therefore easily accessible.

(John's photo)
The timber industry is Oregon's leading business. Trees are also at the heart of environmental concerns; Corvallis was the epicenter of the spotted-owl debates of the 1980's and 90s.

Everywhere you look here, trees will get your attention--even if they are no longer alive.

They provide habitat for wild creatures, both large...

...and small.

An oak provides our firewood.

There are hundreds of Christmas tree farms here.

An old-growth Doug Fir, the signature tree of our area, is too big to capture on my camera.

(John's photo)
A young stand of Doug Fir in the OSU forest

Doug Firs grow fast and get huge.

A fallen fir gathers moss.

(John's photo)
The size of clear cuts is strictly controlled these days, and harvested areas must be immediately planted with seedlings.

(John's photo)
East of the Cascades you find Ponderosa pine with its red bark; in the distance is evidence of a forest fire, part of the natural cycle of western forests.

Ponderosa pine is well-adapted to fire, as you can see from the burned bark.

The bark of a white oak tree

Peeling red bark of a madrone

I love it when a farmer permits one big tree to stand in the middle of a field. Other than a love of beauty there is no other reason to allow this.

The branches of an oak in early spring.

I like this sunny hilltop overlooking town. Sometimes we walk our dogs here.

Lichen covers the branches of deciduous trees from fall to late spring.

And in the spring many trees are gloriously full of blossoms.

There are few things that I look forward to more than when the trees come back to life!


  1. I can't decide which one I like best, because all of them are wonderful!

  2. Like, Jama, I can't decide either. But I really wish I'd had that shot of firewood! Strange how there is beauty in the simplest of things!

  3. Yeah, I can see -your blog background in VERY GREEN:) Still not decided yet on what mine is gonna look like (it was a yellow green with dots and a bow before)
    Have a good weekend!
    What's your daughter studying?

  4. Oddly enough I watched Avatar (again) last night and cried when that big tree went down. Your photos are very nice.

  5. I never grow tired of looking at trees. Great pictures!
    Have a beautiful weekend.

  6. As I scrolled through your photos I kept saying to myself, now there's my favourite.

    No, there's my faviourite.

    No, no, my favourite is definitely that one. It is just spectacular.

    No, this one....

    Oh heck, I just loved them all and can really understand how trees could draw you to an area.

  7. This is a wonderful collection of shots. I love the ladybugs and the shot of all those long tall trunks in the forest. The logger is an interesting addition too.

  8. I agree with Barry, each one just got better and better. This post was full of great information about trees and your neck of the woods. Really enjoyed it. Great job.

  9. oh, I love the close-ups of the bark. and the curling wildness of the oak branches. i love it all...makes me want to be right there.

  10. Oh oh oh what an amazing shoot out!! Wow girl...beautiful! Looks so much like here..then again we are close. I lived in AZ for years in the desert and soooooo missed all the green thrilled to be here too! Beautiful hon!

  11. Kerry, I am sorry for this word I am about to use, but your post is DAMN beautiful...lady bugs, moss, and more...and the Lhama I am in love with the lhama, snaggle tooth and all!


  12. wonderful, you exceeded my expectations.
    I didn't count but the photo with the blue sky, wheat colored center and deep green of trees at the bottom IS my favorite.

  13. Lovely photos - my favorite is of the oak branches in spring. It's good to hear that clear-cutting is being more strictly controlled now. Even so, there's not much diversity in the resulting woods, but it's better than miles and miles of desert being created. People are only just now realizing how important tree cover is to the local climate.

  14. what a beautiful collection. Was it very misty when you took the first photo?

    I like the narrowness of the trees growing together.

    There are gingko trees in America.

    Where's your daughter now?

  15. the hilltop over looking the town is way too cool!! keeps my interest going looking all over the image. great job!!

  16. Nan, you are right about the dangers of monoculture, and although it looks like that might be all we have (from John's photo of the young Doug Fir plantation), there is actually a diverse set of seedlings being planted these days. In the clear cut shown above the following tree species have been planted or allowed to regenerate: Doug Fir, Grand Fir, hemlock, cedar, alder, and maple, all native to this region.

    The large industrial timber companies might have a harder time letting go of monoculture practices than the smaller more nimble landowners (of which there are many, and together they own a huge amount of land). As long as consumers demand wood products, companies will try to find the most efficient way of producing them. Good thing that environmentalists keep a watchful eye.

    I wish I had thought to say this in my post.

  17. Kerry, how perfect that you got the opportunity to post about trees - our very own expert by marriage? by proxy? by osmosis? Super job, very interesting.

  18. Hey, that's good to know that they're avoiding monoculture too these days! Thanks for mentioning it.

  19. I love it when there's one big tree in the middle of a field too, and your sunny hill is gorgeous! Thanks so much for the comment on my Country Roads post. And yes that was my dad's newfie trundling along the old access road. She's startled her share of hikers that's for sure!!! Thanks again, and have a great week.

    Lots of love from Canada


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