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Seedlings examined by Oak Interest Group
The Oak Action Group of Farm Forestry New Zealand is...
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Quercus acutissima subsp. kingii
Quercus acutissima Carruth. is a species whose natural distribution covers a vast territory in East and Southeast Asia, from central Nepal...

Pathfinder: the Last Prairie Sentinel

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Guy Sternberg

Published May 2016 International Oaks No. 27: 207–216

Abstract

“Trail tree” is a term used to describe trees that were purposely bent long ago as directional signs. As late as the mid-20th century, dozens of these bent trees still existed in parts of the United States. Most of the true trail trees in Illinois are now gone, but this cultural and natural heritage remains of interest to many people. Much speculative literature can be found about trail trees and how to distinguish them from trees bent by other causes. Trees that meet a series of standards can be considered likely candidates for trail-tree status. Those standards, and the story of one such tree, are presented here.

Keywords

trail tree, marker tree, pointer tree, thong tree