New Jersey



      Mist brushes the top of the Water Gap. NPS Photo MJ.

New Jersey



On March 14, 2010 the Eastern Native Tree Society and Western Native Tree Society switched from discussion lists on Google Groups to a new discussion list in a Bulletin Board format at:  Posts made since the inception of the BBS on March 14, 2010 will be sorted and archived on the BBS. Click on the link to go to the equivalent section on the new BBS. This website will continue to serve as a front end for the ENTS and WNTS groups. It will continue to serve as a repository of older posts, and will serve as the host site for special projects and features that are not well suited for a BBS format. Please visit the BBS for the latest information and trip reports.


Field Trips 2010



  • Unusual tree I photographed this tree on Sunday. I think it's a Black Gum/Sour Gum (I usually use both common names). It's the smallish flat-topped tree in the middle of the view. I didn't walk up to it and double check, but I am quite sure it's a Sour Gum. But I really liked the shape. This tree is on the southeasternmost of the islands that make up Clark's Landing. The string of islands can be seen running southeast to northwest through the middle of this aerial view. [link] The darker green mass below the islands is a cedar swamp. Above the islands is the Mullica River. There are two islands in the river itself also. They care called the Hog Islands, and are covered with meadows (marshes). There are meadows between Clark's Landing and the cedar swamp as well. This location is in the extreme northeastern corner of Egg Harbor City.... more   Mar 11, 2010.
  • 'Tis the season for...   controlled burning!! Well it looks like controlled burning time is upon us. Monday, yesterday and today I drove by controlled burns in progress, on my way home from the farm. Today I finally took pictures, to go along with all my other forest fire-related pictures. I apologize because the first picture is a little fuzzy. I didn't steady the camera as much as I should have.... more   Mar 10, 2010.
  • Two more hugging trees ENTS, Here's another pair of hugging trees. One is an Atlantic White Cedar. The other I'm not sure about. It's either a swamp maple (red maple) or a Sweet Bay Magnolia. This is about a mile and a half from here. Photos taken the day before yesterday. Barry Caselli  Mar 10, 2010.
  • old White Pine with character ENTS, Here's a very old White Pine next to a house that was built in 1830, or thereabouts. This is the house of the farmer I work for. It's in Vincentown, which is in Southampton Township, Burlington County. The farm is at a completely different location. Anyway, in my opinion the tree is the same age as the house. I estimate a CBH of 13 to 14 feet, or maybe more. It's a real biggie. It's also cool looking in my opinion. The pictures were taken February 17.... more   Mar 10, 2010.
  • Pitch Pine stats Today I took two samples from a large Pitch Pine branch that was on the ground, over at the farm where I work. I've been measuring, and here's what I found: Open cones average 2" wide by 2" high. Most of the needles are between 4" and 5" long, some are 5", and they are in bundles of three. I'm pretty sure I've said before that Pitch Pines and Shortleaf Pines are identical in general overall appearance, with the biggest differences being in needle length and cone size.... more   Mar 9, 2010.
  • Aesthetics lost ENTS, I have a whole bunch of church pictures that I took, that my Webshots desktop uses for wallpaper on this computer. This picture is on my computer screen right now. (The Webshots program changes it once a day.) Anyway, I was looking at the picture a few minutes ago and was reminded of something that I discovered the last time I visited the cemetery, something I didn't like.... more   Mar 9, 2010.
  • Shortleaf Pine stats ENTS, Today I was at Clark's Landing, mentioned here before. There are a lot of Shortleaf Pines there, with the Pitch Pines. One of the Shortleafs had a couple major branches laying on the ground under it, so I took home some samples, just like I did with the Virginia Pine, as you read in my post below.... more March 7, 2010.
  • pine confusion ENTS, Lately I've been seriously wondering about certain pines around here. Scattered around the pine barrens there are pines that have the same general appearance as Pitch Pine, but with shorter needles and tiny cones. For over a year I've been calling them Shortleaf Pine, and I still think they are.... more Feb 22, 200.
  • big boxwood shrubs ENTS, I guess most people know what boxwoods are, right? Well here are a couple of big, old ones. They might be 10 feet tall I guess. Or maybe taller than that. In one of the trunk close-up photos I put my old postcard of the church, for scale. In the photo with the tombstones, the boxwoods are right in the middle, between the red cedar and the hickory. I love cemeteries, by the way.... more   Feb 14, 2010.
  • Please ID this hickory ENTS, Anyone know what this is? It's about 2 inches in diameter, and feels slimey to the touch. I have seen these on the red cedars from time to time. Thanks, Barry Caselli South Jersey  Feb 13, 2010.
  • Unknown "thing" on Eastern Red Cedar ENTS, Anyone know what this is? It's about 2 inches in diameter, and feels slimey to the touch. I have seen these on the red cedars from time to time. Thanks, Barry Caselli South Jersey  Feb 13, 2010.
  • giant buttonwoods of Atsion, NJ ENTS, Here are a few photos of the giant old buttonwoods around the ironmaster's mansion at Atsion. The mansion was built in 1826 during Atsion's second wave. Presumeably the trees were planted at that time. I included one photo of myself with one of the trees for scale. The photo with myself in it was taken in August '09, the others in November '08. I have not measured any of these trees. Also, the first two photos show the front of the mansion (It faced the ironworks in its day.). At the right front corner there is a tree that's not a buttonwood. Unfortunately I've never tried to properly ID this tree, so I don't know what it is. It could be something easy, but I just don't know. The tree I'm standing in front of is at the back left corner of the house, and is not seen in the other photos, not really anyway.... more Feb 13, 2010.
  • Part 3 of Forest Fire in NJ I'm sorry. I keep forgetting about photos I have of forest fire related things in the landscape of South Jersey. Here is one more. The typical fire danger sign. Most are exactly like this. But I know of a different style sign down near the Mizpah Tower. I don't know why that one is different. I don't have a picture of it. Anyway, here's a typical fire danger sign. These are scattered around, all over the pine barrens.... more Feb 13, 2010.
  • Winter wonderland, Feb. 11 Here's a photo album on my Facebook page of all the snow pictures I took on Thursday morning: [link] The trees that can be seen in the photos are Pitch Pine and various oaks, Eastern Red Cedar (pictures 3 and 5), Atlantic White Cedar and Swamp (Red) Maple.... more   Feb 13, 2010.
  • New & better pictures- 2 amazing trees You may remember me posting pictures of 2 trees, a white pine and a blue spruce, that are growing side-by-side, one tiny and one comparatively huge. Well here are some much better pictures that show the spruce very clearly, with the pine next to it. The trees are less than 30 years old, but note the size difference. I guess blue spruce is not shade tolerant!... more   Feb 13, 2010.
  • Part 2: forest fire in NJ ENTS, When I posted this originally, the other day, I showed you a picture of a typical plowed line used during fighting wildfires, and during controlled burning. But I forgot about these pictures I have of a typical tractor and plowed used to plow those lines. This was photographed at the county 4-H Fair last year. The Forest Fire Service always has a presence there.... more   Feb 12, 2010.
  • Chatsworth Lake, 11-29-09 ENTS, I took these photos one morning on the way to the farm. The trees in the photo are Pitch Pine, Atlantic White Cedar, and probably some Shortleaf Pine. I know there are some along the road near the lake.   This is just outside of Chatsworth, in Woodland Township, Burlington County. Chatsworth is sometimes known as the "Capital of the Pines".... more   Feb 8, 2010.
  • forest fire in NJ We all know (I assume) that the NJ Pine Barrens is a fire-climax forest. Forest fire is perfectly normal here, and is good for the forest. (Yes, yes I know. I picked the wrong time to talk about forest fire!) I've attached a series of photos showing all things related to forest fire in the Pine Barrens.... more   Feb 7, 2010.
  • two hugging trees A Pitch Pine and an Atlantic White Cedar, in a loving embrace! I saw these trees while on a hike, early last summer. Barry Caselli South Jersey  Feb 7, 2010.
  • oops- American Holly and snow (I guess it would help if I attached the photo, huh?) Here's the American Holly in our front yard. I took the photo early Saturday afternoon while it was still snowing. There is a row of assorted spruce and pine separating our property from the property next door. Some of those can be seen just behind this tree. In 1985 when we moved here this holly was about knee high, growing wild next to the driveway.... more Feb 7, 2010.
  • amazing blue spruce and white pine The trees themselves aren't amazing. What is amazing is the fact that they are the same age as each other! They are in a row of trees planted along the road in front of our property. Starting at the driveway and going southwest, there are pitch pines, white pines and the blue spruce. But who in his right mind would plant white pines and a blue spruce next to each other at equal distances? The blue spruce got shaded out early on. I removed several branches of the white pine over the years, but that was kind of a waste of time, since practically the entire tree hangs over the spruce. I think this row of trees was planted around 1982 or 1983.... more   Feb 7, 2010.
  • deer damage  The first photo shows some multiflora rose and some autumn olives, behind the septic leech field. Both species are invasives anyway.The second photo shows some arbor vitae in the side yard of the house. Amazing, huh? Actually the holly tree (seen in the snow picture) is eaten away too. But I don't have a picture of it that shows the damage.... more   Feb 7, 2010.
  • American Holly and snow Here's the American Holly in our front yard. I took the photo early this afternoon while it was still snowing. There is a row of assorted spruce and pine separating our property from the property next door. Some of those can be seen just behind this tree. In 1985 when we moved here this holly was about knee high, growing wild next to the driveway.... more   Feb 7, 2010.
  • Two Norway Spruce On January 26 I took these photos of a couple of Norway Spruce in someone's yard, at the corner of the road I live on, and U.S. 30. I haven't the foggiest idea how tall they are, but I think they are beautiful trees, even though I'm more into Pitch Pine and Atlantic White Cedar than anything else.... more   Feb 7, 2010.
  • NJ in the Fall  Not sure if these are strictly ENTS-type photos, but since some others have been posting some general woods/scenic type photos that are not always forest interior or old-growth.... Anyway I have a backlog of thousands of photos but I have finally started getting the first couple from this fall processed and uploaded so here you go:... more   Feb 7, 2010.
  • giant Buttonwood ENTS, I forgot I had this picture. I've been sorting my digital photos lately (I have thousands), and found this picture I took of the largest Buttonwood in the ghost town of Gloucester Furnace. The Gloucester Furnace area is along both sides of a dirt road in the northern part of Egg Harbor City. There are only 3 houses in the entire area there. I have been told that this tree once stood in front of the ironmaster's mansion, which is long gone. It's now in the side yard of a modern house. This tree most likely was planted when Gloucester Furnace started, which was around 1800. I feel farely confident that this tree is the largest tree of any species in the county. I'm guessing it to be easily 4 or 5 feet in diameter, maybe more.... more   Feb 6, 2010.
  • Pitch Pine, Shortleaf and Loblolly Here's a photo of the cones in my collection. The 3 at top left are Loblolly, below those are Pitch Pine, and to the right of the Pitch Pine, are the Shortleaf. Barry Caselli South Jersey Jan 30, 2010.
  • 2 big Buttonwoods I forgot I had these pictures. I took these photos on January 20, 2008. These trees are about 9 miles from here, in this township. I have not measured them. They most likely date to the construction of the inn. Barry Caselli South Jersey  Jan 30, 2010.
  • Unusual Buttonwood One final tree from Crowley's Landing (see my last two posts). Here's a Buttonwood (Eastern Sycamore of course). I'm quite sure, from my experience with this area, that the reason it has all those trunks is that the original trunk was lost in a forest fire a long time ago, if it wasn't cut down for some other reason. I know if you go into a forest and find oak trees with 3 or 4 trunks in a circular pattern, it's because of the same thing. Of course Buttonwood is not native, so you rarely see them like this. All of these trunks are under a foot in diameter, most of them well under a foot.... more   Jan 30, 2010.
  • perfect, beautiful Shortleaf Pine Also at Crowley's Landing (see my last post), I saw this beautiful, perfect Shortleaf Pine. This is what I call a perfectly shaped Shortleaf Pine. I love it. It's also a biggie, much larger than I had previously imagined. I'm guessing it's close to 7 feet. It may be the same size as the Estell Manor Pitch Pine that I've talked about in the past. See my last post, re: I didn't have my tape with me.... more   Jan 30, 2010.
  • Large red cedar On Tuesday I was off from work (actually for a couple days) because my truck was out for repair. I also didn't want to drive my car other than locally because it has a blown brake line. I stopped to eat my lunch at the Crowley's Landing picnic area and boat launch, which is along the Mullica River in Wharton State Forest. I've been there a million times. But this time I took note of and measured this big Eastern Red Cedar. The picnic area is filled with red cedar, while the entrance road goes through an Atlantic White Cedar swamp. Actually red and white cedars can be seen side by side close to the water in the picnic area. Cowley's Landing sits on the Crowleytown or Cowleyville ghost town site.... more   Jan 30, 2010.
  • a most unusual White Pine Hello ENTs, I'm way behind in my email again, as usual, mostly due to ENTS posts, which I do want to read. I thought I'd send this picture along for your enjoyment. I think this tree may qualify as the most unusual White Pine. It's certainly the most unusual that I have seen. This is in the Town of Hammonton, Atlantic County, NJ. It's actually probaby a quarter mile or half mile from the Camden County line. I have no idea of its height or CBH. But I love it. I've always been fascinated with witch's brooms since I've lived here in the Pine Barrens. But finding one in a tree other than Pitch Pine is unusual. And finding a tree whose entire top is a witch's broom- not that is extremely unusual! I love this tree.... more   Jan 20, 2010.
  • Beautiful stunted Pitch Pines Today I took a nice hike in Wharton State Forest. I estimate that I hiked 4 to 6 miles. I really can't be sure. The sky was a beautiful deep blue and there were no clouds. It was perfect. I think the temperature was 29 or 30 with a little bit of wind. I was totally in awe of the beauty around me, the whole time. While hiking the nature trail I stopped to take some pictures, and ended up shooting 2 min., 48 sec. of video.... more
    By Barry Caselli  - Jan 9, 2010
  • Two ancient buttonwoods for you ENTS, Today, at the very beginning of my hike, I walked past this historic site and took these photos, showing the two buttonwoods. I think it's very likely they are the same age as the house. My guess as to circumference, maybe 12 to 13 feet? Maybe even more. It's hard to tell. They were on private property, obviously, so I couldn't just walk over and measure them. They are real beauties though. I love those trees. They can be found at most historic sites, especially those from the 18th century....
    By Barry Caselli  - Jan 9, 2010
  • Sparta Glen, NJ Did a quick drive along the road that sits just to the south and above the area. I know the hemlocks have been decimated here (and already long ago) for the most part, but I noticed that the steep slopes rising above the gorge appeared to have some sizable hardwoods. Might be another area worth checking out. Undoubtably at least 150 years old... more
    By Dinomys4  - Jan 9, 2010
  • Old growth in the NJ Pine Barrens? ENTS, Today I was down in the Atlantic County Park at Estell Manor. I wanted to eat my lunch, do some hiking, and re-visit my favorite Pitch Pine....
    By Barry Caselli  - Jan 8, 2010
  • My favorite Pitch Pine- a video  January 5, 2010
  • Possible old growth in the Pine Barrens January 5, 2010
  • Ring count of down Pitch Pine January 4, 2010
  • Witch's brooms seen today   January 4, 2010
  • Pitch Pine with lichen garden  January 4, 2010
  • Update of the big oak at Elwood January 3, 2010
  • Huge buttonwoods found today  January 3, 2010
  • a couple more NJ possibilities January 1, 2010


Field Trips 2009










  • Ghosts of the Pines
  • The Pinelands Preservation Alliance, the non-profit group that watches over the Pinelands Commission, making sure they are doing their job (or trying to), has a beautiful new website. I'm very impressed.
  • This is the Pinelands Commission's website:
    I believe the Pinelands Commission has lost its way, and allows way, way too much development, and caves in to developers way to easily.
    Other great sites:
  • Book about the plants of the Pine Barrens of New Jersey.
    The full title is: "Annual Report of the New Jersey State Museum, Including a Report of the plants of Southern New Jersey, with Especial Reference to the Flora of the Pine Barrens", 1910, by Witmer Stone. The museum report only takes up 19 pages. But the rest of the book is 828 pages, not including the plates in the back. It's a fantastic reference work for the NJ Pine Barrens.The document, 1000+ pages can be downloaded as a pdf file from here:
  • The Jersey Devil
  • Forests of the Garden State:  Resource Bull. NE-163. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northeastern Research Station. 20 p.: RB-NE-163.  A report on the fourth forest inventory of New Jersey conducted in 1998-99 by the Forest Inventory and Analysis unit of the Northeastern Research Station. Discusses the current condition and changes from previous inventories for forest area, timber volume, tree species, and growth and removals. Graphics depict data at the state level and by county where appropriate. 
  • Saddler's Woods - (formerly  Macarthur Woods) has a new website address at:  The mission of Saddler's Woods Conservation Association is to restore and preserve Saddler's Woods through active site management, to promote its appreciation through community education programs, and to cooperate with public agencies, volunteer associations and other nonprofit organizations to ensure Saddler's Woods remains a natural legacy for future generations. Saddler's Woods contains a small pocket of forest with many trees between 100 and 300 years old and is one of the last old growth forests. Saddler's Woods is an Appalachian-Oak Forest which consists of White Oak, Northern Red Oak, Black Oak, Chestnut Oak, Tulip Tree, Birch, Red Maple, Sugar Maple, American Beech and three Hickories: Shagbark, Pignut and Mockernut.
  • The West Caldwell Centennial Rededication of the Cucumber Magnolia Tree - Friendly's Restaurant, 32 Bloomfield Avenue, West Caldwell, NJ 07006
  • The Pinelands Preservation Alliance, the non-profit group that watches over the Pinelands Commission, making sure they are doing their job (or trying to), has a beautiful new website. I'm very impressed. 
  • This is the Pinelands Commission's website:
    I believe the Pinelands Commission has lost its way, and allows way, way too much development, and caves in to developers way to easily.