Our objective at Forestry Press is to provide the most accurate information on Vermont’s trees and in subsequent editions to keep pace with new findings.
So what makes Forest Trees of Vermont so unique and different from other dendrology books?
First, Forest Trees of Vermont only includes trees that are native to Vermont’s forests, or were introduced and have since become part of Vermont’s forests. Imported landscape trees, except in cases where they have become invasive and the dominant or co-dominant trees in the forest, have been excluded.
Next, Forest Trees of Vermont is water resistant and spiral bound for greater hardiness and easier access in the woods, the classroom, and the living room.
While most tree identification books use sketches for leaves, petioles, fruits, flowers, and shape, nothing is better than full-color pictures. The Forestry Press team felt that having both color photographs and sketches would be the most ideal for its users. In addition, with the help of QR codes, even more information is available immediately on your smart phone or tablet.
With regard to tree locations, we chose not to use a map since climate changes even in the past 50 years have shifted the boundaries of many tree species’ territories. Rather, we decided to reference Vermont’s counties as well as well-known natural regions such as the Champlain Valley, the Northeast Kingdom, the Connecticut River Valley, and the Green Mountains, for approximate locations.
Finally, we wanted to produce a tree identification reference book for a variety of users, including high-school students in botany or biology classes; college students with environmental and forestry majors or who are just taking a dendrology course; children at Vermont’s summer camps; Vermont landowners seeking to learn more about their forest properties; consulting or county foresters; scouts working for their merit badges; and tourists visiting Vermont to admire the brilliant color changes in fall and autumn or Vermont’s beautiful trees in the spring, summer, and winter.
To enhance the book’s interest, particularly to younger generations, we made every effort to include a few unique features and facts related to historical and contemporary uses of the tree with each description.
While Forest Trees of Vermont is not intended to be about forest ecology or silviculture, the appendixes contain information that will help you in your exploration and identification of Vermont’s trees and forests. We have limited the appendixes to information we believe will be most beneficial to you while you are exploring Vermont’s forests.
Using this book to learn to identify trees, and to learn about trees and forests, can help to keep your children physically and mentally healthy and can be a great family activity. What fun it can be to explore the Vermont woods and see the diversity of trees! Can you identify one of the earliest to blossom in the spring – the serviceberry? Did you know that one shrub-like tree (witch hazel) does not blossom until the fall? Some – like poplars (aspens), cherries, and white birch – are fast-growing ‘pioneers’ that thrive in the full sun following a forest fire or timber harvest. Others, like our state tree in Vermont, the sugar maple, can take root in deep shade and grow slowly for hundreds of years.”
We hope that you will take the time to enjoy Vermont’s trees, and to use the wealth of information in this book to educate yourselves, your friends, your children, and your students about this marvelous, renewable resource that is essential to Vermont’s quality of life. Our hope is that Forest Trees of Vermont not only helps you to identify and learn more about each tree to the level of understanding that you desire, but that it enhances your enjoyment and forms a connection to the forests of Vermont.