Tree Bark-Wrinkles in Time, and Other Winter Details

Last season’s yarrow reappears after snow on this below-zero day. Today we’ll look at end-of-winter visages in nature that we missed until now.

Evergreen needles show fine detail.

Ready-made snowballs—free.

There are so many bark details to re-discover this winter while trees remain undressed. An easy way to see a variety of trees growing in this region’s conditions is to walk the public Yankton Arboretum trail behind the high school. While some can identify trees by their bark characteristics, these specimen trees are labeled and give more information.

The Prairie Crabapple, hardy to Zone 3b, is native to eastern Minnesota but has become naturalized in the Clay and Lincoln counties of South Dakota. One thought is that early Native Americans may have transported the fruit and seed that took root.

Heritage Oak, hardy to Zone 4b, the cross of English and bur oak, is considered a fast-growing oak with an oval canopy when mature.

Camperdown Elm is an English elm planted in southern South Dakota and has seemed to survive Dutch Elm disease at several locations in the state. Elms, widely popular and adapted to the Northern Plains, mostly died by the late 1990s here due to the fungal disease. More information about the three trees is found in Trees, an illustrated field guide, by Dr. John Ball, Forestry, South Dakota State University. 


Other winter details to discover in winter include wildlife sightings. Trails are easy to see in the snow. Turkeys and deer cross paths sometimes.

A slow turkey catches up, like me. Her feathers are fluffed for a cold morning walk—lots of winter details to discover these days.

Happy sightings of your favorite winter details. Thanks for joining us today. Hope to see you at next week’s post.

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