Buds, Twigs, and Bark: How to Identify Trees and Shrubs in Winter
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Join Chelsey Simmons of Berkshire Environmental Action Team (BEAT) for the February Berkshire Green Drinks virtual event to explore the buds, twigs, and bark of common trees seen in the New England landscape.
It may be surprising, but winter is actually an excellent time to learn how to identify woody plant species. The absence of leaves allows for the opportunity to take a closer look at the characteristics that are often overlooked, like the subtle features of a twig, the arrangement of buds, and the overall form and structure of a tree. Chelsey will go over the steps to tree identification, break down twig morphology, and give helpful hints on remembering one species from another — all of which will aid in tree and shrub identification year-round.
Chelsey Simmons is the programs director for Berkshire Environmental Action Team, a nonprofit based in Pittsfield, Massachusetts. As part of her work for BEAT, she leads numerous naturalist walks throughout Berkshire County year-round. For the past few years, she's been working on an identification book of trees and shrubs found in western Massachusetts, meticulously drawing and painting each page by hand and sharing those pages with the public through BEAT's "Tree of the Month" series with the hope of getting people excited about trees and interested in the native species found in our region.
Berkshire Green Drinks (formerly Pittsfield Green Drinks) is an informal gathering that takes place once a month. A guest speaker talks for about 30 minutes beginning at 6 PM, and the presentation is followed by a discussion and Q&A. These nights are free and open to everyone with any environmental interest.