Mystery Trees

I wonder if I could engage some interest in helping me identify some trees and a flowering plant? Some background: I'm in SW Idaho-Sunset Western Garden Book says I'm 2B although most seed packages will tell me I'm in zone 5-6. I recently moved to some acreage with some well established grounds. Most of the stuff here is at least 70 years old and very well established although, we bought it as an estate from some deceased owners in their 90's and it's been empty and neglected for some time. I've identified a lot of things so far but there are a few trees and one plant so far that eludes me.
I've taken photos of each one with a closeup of each and all of these are recent photos as in last week.
Some additional information: We've had an unusually cold spring and most of our things are experiencing a later than usual bloom.
The deep red tree is easily 80 feet tall which I neglected to mention on the Photobucket site.
The "Stinky Tree bears an bit more of an explanation. It reeks. I mean really, really stinks. It smells like fish emulsion and the first time I smelled it inside I thought it was the new carpet outgassing that was causing it! Ive never smelled its equal.
The Huge Weird Shrub is something Ive seen all over the place but mostly pruned to look more like a tree, unlike this one with all the twisting multiple branches which I quite like.
Here is the link with the photos Ive uploaded and I would sure appreciate anyone taking a guess at what these might be.
http://s192.photobucket.com/albums/z215/CustomQuiltArt/Stuff /
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The "Mystery Flowers" are lupines.
The "Deep Red Tree" looks like a red-leafed Norway Maple. There are several cultivars that are very hard to tell apart. Crinson King and Royal Red are two of them.
Kevin Cherkauer Utopia in Decay http://home.comcast.net/~kevin.cherkauer/site/?/blog /

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The tree looks even *more* like a Norway maple now that I notice the photo has some maple seeds in it dangling from the tree. Before I was focused on just the leaves. :-) I have a red-leafed Norway maple in my yard that looks just like your tree. I don't know which cultivar mine is either, BTW.
Kevin Cherkauer Utopia in Decay http://home.comcast.net/~kevin.cherkauer/site/?/blog /

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The Western Garden Book makes up its own zone designations that are completely separate from those defined by the USDA. The USDA zones are the ones on the seed packets and on plants you buy at nurseries. This is why you are seeing two different zones that don't match.
(Typo fix for my post about your tree -- "Crimson King" not "Crinson King.")
Kevin Cherkauer Utopia in Decay http://home.comcast.net/~kevin.cherkauer/site/?/blog /
Newsgroups: rec.gardens Sent: Friday, May 23, 2008 5:32 PM Subject: Mystery Trees
I wonder if I could engage some interest in helping me identify some trees and a flowering plant? Some background: I'm in SW Idaho-Sunset Western Garden Book says I'm 2B although most seed packages will tell me I'm in zone 5-6. I recently moved to some acreage with some well established grounds. Most of the stuff here is at least 70 years old and very well established although, we bought it as an estate from some deceased owners in their 90's and it's been empty and neglected for some time. I've identified a lot of things so far but there are a few trees and one plant so far that eludes me.
I've taken photos of each one with a closeup of each and all of these are recent photos as in last week.
Some additional information: We've had an unusually cold spring and most of our things are experiencing a later than usual bloom.
The deep red tree is easily 80 feet tall which I neglected to mention on the Photobucket site.
The "Stinky Tree bears an bit more of an explanation. It reeks. I mean really, really stinks. It smells like fish emulsion and the first time I smelled it inside I thought it was the new carpet outgassing that was causing it! Ive never smelled its equal.
The Huge Weird Shrub is something Ive seen all over the place but mostly pruned to look more like a tree, unlike this one with all the twisting multiple branches which I quite like.
Here is the link with the photos Ive uploaded and I would sure appreciate anyone taking a guess at what these might be.
http://s192.photobucket.com/albums/z215/CustomQuiltArt/Stuff /
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The mystery flower is a lupin of some sort.
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Regarding the "huge weird shrub", the leaf shape and the color of the twigs is similar to some of the currents, Ribes alpinum in particular. It has been several decades since I have seen any current plants but there were some varieties in the trade for ornamental purposes as opposed to fruit production. Old plants could easily be trained as trees. The flowers on your plants are more double than I recall. Most currents would not be hardy in much of Idaho. However, there is a warmer band in the area of Boise to Twin Falls where they could survive. Have you seen any fruit? That would confirm the identification as currents. Ribes sanguineum has flowers which are red and was often used as an ornamental shrub. However, many currents have yellow flowers. You can see from all this that I am not positive about this ID of the mystery plant. Go to Google, click images and enter Ribes and than Ribes alpinum and also the Ribes sanguineum. Perhaps you will see some similarities.
jim
I wonder if I could engage some interest in helping me identify some trees and a flowering plant? Some background: I'm in SW Idaho-Sunset Western Garden Book says I'm 2B although most seed packages will tell me I'm in zone 5-6. I recently moved to some acreage with some well established grounds. Most of the stuff here is at least 70 years old and very well established although, we bought it as an estate from some deceased owners in their 90's and it's been empty and neglected for some time. I've identified a lot of things so far but there are a few trees and one plant so far that eludes me.
I've taken photos of each one with a closeup of each and all of these are recent photos as in last week.
Some additional information: We've had an unusually cold spring and most of our things are experiencing a later than usual bloom.
The deep red tree is easily 80 feet tall which I neglected to mention on the Photobucket site.
The "Stinky Tree" bears an bit more of an explanation. It reeks. I mean really, really stinks. It smells like fish emulsion and the first time I smelled it inside I thought it was the new carpet outgassing that was causing it! I've never smelled its equal.
The Huge Weird Shrub is something I've seen all over the place but mostly pruned to look more like a tree, unlike this one with all the twisting multiple branches which I quite like.
Here is the link with the photos I've uploaded and I would sure appreciate anyone taking a guess at what these might be.
http://s192.photobucket.com/albums/z215/CustomQuiltArt/Stuff/
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The "stinky tree" is blue elderberry. They were all over the place where I lived, for a short time, in Idaho. They are a native tree, elk love them, so do the bears. The Indians used them for a multitude of things, a few of which were making flutes and for medicinal purposes. It has antiviral properties that helped keep the native Americans from being totally wiped out by white man's influenza. It'll be covered with clumps of dark berries come fall where all those clusters of flowers are. The old farm family most likely used them for wine and jellies and made tea from the blossom petals when suffering from "spring miseries".
If you want a fun project cut a straight piece of branch about 6 - 8 inches long and set it aside to dry. You'll be able to slip the wood from the bark and you too can make a slide flute. Did that fun little project with my Cub Scouts ;)
Val
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Wow, thanks! I'd never have guessed that. It'll be interesting to see if berries do form. I'd be very excited if I got enough berries to make some elderberry jam. I'll give the fun project a try. There are several dead branches that need pruned so I'll be sure to set some aside.
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Wow, thanks! I'd never have guessed that. It'll be interesting to see if berries do form. I'd be very excited if I got enough berries to make some elderberry jam. I'll give the fun project a try. There are several dead branches that need pruned so I'll be sure to set some aside.
Red berries and fresh bark are poisonous, just make note of that. I dug around and found directions for making the flute.....my little Cub Scout is 40 years old now so it's been awhile. I guess it wasn't a slide flute, that must have been some other project, who knows. Here's the instructions I found.
Step 1. Cut dead elderberry branch (approximately 3/4" or a little less in diameter) into 1 foot lengths. Dead and dry is better as the branch is already seasoned or cured. If you cut a green branch you will need to let it dry for several months first. They don't have to be perfectly straight and knots add interest Step 2. Choose one that has a large core of the darker colored soft pith. Use a long flat head screw driver to dig out the pith from both ends. It's soft and comes out easily, but you have to work at it a little to get most of it out. Step 3. Use a long thin round rasp or skinny wire brush to get the rest of the pith out. You can also use various grits of sandpaper wrapped around a wooden dowel that is smaller in diameter than your soon to be flute. You can either peel the bark off and sand it or leave the bark on. We peeled the bark I'm sure. Step 4. Place your thumb in the center of your flute and then make a mark on either side, then move your thumb to the other side of each mark and make another mark. These are where your finger holes will be. Step 5. Use a Phillips screw driver and carefully turn it to drill out your finger holes where your marks are. Step 6. Use a sharp knife and offset your finger holes. You might also want to whittle to thin the end of the flute on both ends so that it's easier to get your mouth around it. You can also use a small file to smooth the ends - you wouldn't want splinters in your lip! Step 7. If you peel or whittle the bark off, you can use a wood burning tool to decorate it. A thin coating of vegetable cooking oil applied and rubbed off with a soft cloth makes a nice finish too. Step 8. It should be held at a 45 degree angle to one side of your mouth and tilted slightly downward. Blow softly and keep trying until you hit your sweet spot.
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I am pretty sure, the "Pink Feather" is a Tamarisk tree, a bad pest. Make sure that it does not spread out of control. It creates thickets and is very difficult to eradicate.
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Walter
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Thank you Walter. It's actually in a good place if it does spread out and it's got several acres to do that in. Too bad its' a pest though, it's such a pretty pink thing.
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The stuff is so bad, it actually chokes the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon. Every ten years or so they have to release a flood from Lake Powell (Glen Canyon Dam) to scour the canyon floor. I know, I was there, paddling through the Grand Canyon. :-)
http://s302.photobucket.com/albums/nn96/wer11111/?action=view&current=GrandCy89080.jpg
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Walter
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On May 24, 8:55 pm, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

Tamarisk is also called SaltCedar and is not a good thing to keep around. It exudes salt from its leaves, harming nearby species and water sources. It's on the list of Idaho State Dept of Agriculture noxious weeds. Google: Idaho Noxious Weeds to read more. I would remove it.
Emilie NorCal
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