Saturday, October 6, 2007

Red Ash turning yellow.

Because so many plants from so many places are able to thrive in this petri-dish-of-nutrient-agar-in-an-incubator-place, you can rarely know for certain what you are looking at. These handsome trees, turning a gentle yellow in the median strip of a major road, are some sort of ash.
From afar, I would guess Red Ash, Fraxinus pennsylvanica, which occurs naturally in southeastern Canada and the eastern U.S. It might also be F. excelsior, European Ash, which is a relatively common ornamental tree in Vancouver and elsewhere. I would have to cross the road, field guide in hand, to inspect the undersides of the leaflets to know for sure. And I still might not know for sure. Furthermore, taxonomic accuracy is a silly reason to get hit by a car.

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