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Need help identifying a tree that was cut down

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Forum topic by Tony1212 posted 10-21-2021 06:55 PM 655 views 0 times favorited 29 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Tony1212

617 posts in 3017 days


10-21-2021 06:55 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question identify mystery tree ash hickory locust

A tree died between the sidewalk and street and the township crew came out this morning to cut it down. They were nice enough to cut the trunk up into 3 pieces and leave them for me.

The tree had a few leaves last year, but none this year. This pic was taken back in June (we also had to cut down the evergreen tree that is leaning over my house). It’s the bare tree along the left side of the pic.

I never got around to identifying it when it was alive figuring it would probably outlast me. But alas…

From what I remember of the leaves, it is either:
- ash,
- hickory
- (possibly) a shademaster honey locust.

It had that type of compound leaves similar to all of these trees. I seem to remember a lot of “helicopter” seeds in the area (which would indicate an ash tree), but we have some maple trees around as well. I do not remember any type of nut or fruit (which would indicate NOT a hickory).

I’m hoping someone can tell by the bark and the color of the sap and heart wood.

-- Tony, SW Chicago Suburbs


29 replies so far

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therealSteveN

9208 posts in 1856 days


#1 posted 10-21-2021 07:52 PM

I’d say the Emerald Ash Borer strikes again. I’m just saying that based on likelyhood of why a healthy tree suddenly wasn’t. Ash have so many varietals, and most have different barks, leaves, and outward appearance it’s often hard to tell. Pics are way to far away to tell anything about end grain. The butt end looks ash like, but that is also a look several other species share.

I’m in Ohio, and with the exception of folks using a systemic annually around the drip line of their Ash, they are all gone. Healthy looking, suddenly dead looking. Those little beetles mess up the works.

-- Think safe, be safe

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SMP

4951 posts in 1188 days


#2 posted 10-21-2021 07:57 PM

Pretty sure his name was Bob.

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ibewjon

2680 posts in 4075 days


#3 posted 10-21-2021 09:06 PM

It definitely isn’t an ash tree. The bark looks like river birch. Not locust or hickory. If you have a piece, ask at Woodcraft. Carl may have an idea. Are you sure it had compound leaves?

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Tony1212

617 posts in 3017 days


#4 posted 10-22-2021 01:46 PM



Pretty sure his name was Bob.

- SMP

Ah. Well, that narrows it down.

-- Tony, SW Chicago Suburbs

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Tony1212

617 posts in 3017 days


#5 posted 10-22-2021 01:52 PM



It definitely isn t an ash tree. The bark looks like river birch. Not locust or hickory. If you have a piece, ask at Woodcraft. Carl may have an idea. Are you sure it had compound leaves?

- ibewjon

I’m positive that it had compound leaves.

Not a river birch. While the bark does look a little curly, it’s not nearly as papery and thin as a birch.

The guy that cut down the tree was exclaiming to his coworkers how difficult it was to cut down. They first chopped off all of the upper limbs then attached a winch cable to the top of the trunk and pulled as the guy cut at the bottom. He cut the wedge out from the side facing the winch and went around the other side to do the final cut. He had to keep cutting from the back until there was about 1/2” of wood between the back cut and wedge before the winch could pull the tree over.

It looks like it’s some pretty hard wood.

-- Tony, SW Chicago Suburbs

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Ocelot

3561 posts in 3920 days


#6 posted 10-22-2021 03:08 PM

Locust has thorns at least all I have known.

-- I intended to be a woodworker, but turned into a tool and lumber collector.

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HokieKen

19822 posts in 2421 days


#7 posted 10-22-2021 03:17 PM

Looks like Pecan to me. And if it wasn’t near another pecan tree, it wouldn’t produce fruit.

-- I collect hobbies. There is no sense in limiting yourself (Don W) - - - - - - - - Kenny in SW VA

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Tony1212

617 posts in 3017 days


#8 posted 10-22-2021 04:35 PM



Locust has thorns at least all I have known.

- Ocelot

The Shademaster Locust that I linked to above does not have thorns nor the huge seed pods.

-- Tony, SW Chicago Suburbs

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Tony1212

617 posts in 3017 days


#9 posted 10-22-2021 04:37 PM



Looks like Pecan to me. And if it wasn t near another pecan tree, it wouldn t produce fruit.

- HokieKen

Hrmmm. Could be. I seem to remember the leaves being smaller than the pictures of pecan show.

Will it still flower if no other pecans are around? I don’t remember anything what I’ve seen online.

-- Tony, SW Chicago Suburbs

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ibewjon

2680 posts in 4075 days


#10 posted 10-22-2021 05:29 PM

Not many pecans growing in our part of Illinois. They are not cold hardy for our zone.

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ibewjon

2680 posts in 4075 days


#11 posted 10-22-2021 05:30 PM

Do you have the logs? Maybe his saw was dull.

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HokieKen

19822 posts in 2421 days


#12 posted 10-22-2021 05:59 PM

Pecans will still flower but won’t usually bare fruit if there are no other trees to cross-pollinate with. It is possible for them to self-pollinate but it results in little yield and low-quality nuts usually.

It is possible that it’s a Hickory of some sort (Pecan is technically a Hickory I believe). While all Hickory trees produce nuts, they won’t start producing until they’re about 40 years old. So it’s possible that’s just a juvenille Hickory. But the bark and color of the heart and sap wood screams Pecan to me.

-- I collect hobbies. There is no sense in limiting yourself (Don W) - - - - - - - - Kenny in SW VA

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Steve

2641 posts in 1865 days


#13 posted 10-22-2021 06:04 PM

What did the helicopter seedlings look like?

I thought only maples had the helicopter seedlings.

I’m going to guess silver maple

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HokieKen

19822 posts in 2421 days


#14 posted 10-22-2021 06:26 PM

We have two old, gigantic Pecans here on the property at work. I took a walk and snapped a few pics of them to see if it helps any.

I missed the bit about helicopter seedlings though. That would limit it to Maple, Ash or Elm as far as I know.

-- I collect hobbies. There is no sense in limiting yourself (Don W) - - - - - - - - Kenny in SW VA

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Steve

2641 posts in 1865 days


#15 posted 10-22-2021 06:35 PM

Kenny, you should “accidentally” back into that tree with your truck and take home the trunk. ;)

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