1. For the love of trees : part 1 (in progress) (with views from an arborist)

    November 15, 2017 by MAX

    And what’s not to love? Check in here periodically to catch up on my musings of the tree, the magnificent, the mysterious and the important tree!  As a lover of trees, and as a professional arborist I never stop learning and investigating the incredible and diverse universe that is the tree. Think about it: what other group of plants (or animals perhaps?) on this planet has benefited mankind as much? Trees offer shelter or some form of benefit  to us and a vast chunk of life on this planet.  I’ll attempt to cover many forms of life benefiting from trees, along with the oldest of various species, and of course their awesome beauty, beginning with the oak family.

    Record size trees of Mossuri, arborist Ed Max, rcord trees of Iliinois, champion trees of America

    This massive Bur oak blew me away. Its sheer mass and height is unreal. Many species of birds, fungi, insects and mammals earn their living off this live behemoth.

    There are studies done on the life cycle of the native oak, and the estimates are that well over 20,000 different species of organisms rely on the oak family (Midwest region) for sustenance (both above ground, and below)

    native oaks, record size trees of Illinois

    State Champion White oak of Illinois. A very lg. tree indeed. Located just SW of Ottawa Il.. To think that this plant has been here since before the founding of the U.S.!

     

     

     


  2. Osage Orange tree (Maclura pom.) Failure – A century and a half year old tree goes down in West Chicago, Il

    November 9, 2017 by MAX

    A tale behind the pictures below:  (with some embellishment).

    Picture this……Originally oak savannah, mixed with occasional tallgrass prairie…… early 1800’s perhaps…..pre-settlement, with sizeable native – American  (in what is today West Chicago Il. ).  Then…….along came settlers and farmers looking for arable, loamy  farmland.      And they found it.     So in the process of clearing and maintaining their holdings (as time went on), by the mid 1800’s the idea of hedgerows came to be the norm.

    And one of the more common and cheap forms of hedgerow materials was Osage Orange, a native to Texas and Oklahoma.  

     

    Tree care near Geneva and Winfield Il, arborist and designers on staff, maxlandscape.com for trees and garden design

    Osage orange tree failed in late October 2017.  There had been storms the past month, but none severe- it was too heavy w/ a co-dominant (or pair of) stems. This tree had been in this spot since the 1800’s…..now an unrecognizable jumble of weedy invasives.

    The farmer would then head out to his or her property borders and plant  the sections of live Osage Orange into the rich earth every few yards, and VIOLA!…..the lifeless (dormant) wood sprang to life. And live they did. For close to 2 centuries! (See annual growth rings pictured). This species was also used (by the U.S. and WCC) as hardy a windbreak during and after the dustbowl in the central U.S., to combat erosion and wind.

    So, if you ever come across a lonely row of Osage Orange along a roadside, or in a neighborhood, remember the lore of the farmer and his hedgerow.  HINT: Look for those odd, and rather decorative lime green fruits in fall. They are produced by the female Osage Orange. Yes, they are sexed- male and female (or dioecious). If you ever have the urge to plant for the fruit- you’ll need both sexes to have fruit. In today’s market, most Osage Orange are of the male clones only, so no fruit. And sadly- up until recently, Osage Orange are hard to come by. But I recommend such trees- as they are hardy, seem to have few insect or disease issues, and live for centuries!

    History of trees  in the Chicago area…..See our native tree list for more info on reliable and sturdy trees for our changing climate in the Midwest. Ed Max is a certified arborist and naturalist, and would be happy to stop out for a consultation. Fall is best time for planting, as is spring.

    Wheaton Il historic trees, native trees , Arborsit and landscape designs

    Osage Orange – ancient hedgerow species of the 1800s, arborist Ed Max tells the tale. Trees of West Chicago, Winfield, Il are his specialty and passion!

    * With a warming climate, and climate change- deciding on a tree for long term benefits is important – use native species such as oak, and hickory. Or Gingko, maple and Cypress.     Ed Max is a certified Arborist and a member of the International Arborist Society, and is a landscape designer in the western suburbs of Chicago.


  3. Dance of the Wood Betony (Pedicularis), a lovely parasitic native

    May 2, 2017 by MAX
    Native landscape by ed max, butterlfy gardens of wheaton, glen elly woodland native species, west chicago native landscapes, natural landscape by ed max,

    Swirling beauty! This semi parasitic native of our higher quality prairies is quite a sight in spring.   Easily spotted when little else is in bloom in the prairie or oak savanna.

    • Not a plant easily obtained. Not recommended for most gardens – just a fun plant worth knowing and looking for while hiking.
    • Always buy native species (especially rarer types) from known and reputable growers. Never dig plants (such as betony), as they will most likely drop dead upon arrival to your gardens!
    • Inquire for plant lists and growers whom are local.
    • Designer Ed Max is also cert naturalist plus cert arborist, and designs many gardens , woodlands, and other properties (both traditional and naturalistic) and meshes native with non-native species for wonderful and varied garden and landscape!

  4. Asimina: the native Pawpaw

    April 24, 2015 by MAX
    native trees, Ed max arborist, maxlandscape.com

    Of the custard family, and the only one of
    N A.. Highly edible fruit, long leaf, nice fall colors, a woodland denizen, forms colonies. To 20′.

    Seen here is its truly unusual maroon blossom. Takes two to cross pollinate!

    Site in :

    Full sun, part shade, in rich humus soils really helps.


  5. Arborist news: spring is prime time to plant trees

    March 6, 2015 by MAX

    Spring is the optimal time to plant trees, especially native species such as Bur oak (Quercus mac.), Red oak (Quercus rub.), Hackberry, Gingko, or Hickory. Many Trees are dug only in spring. So, for best selection, and to avoid selecting trees that have been above ground for too long-again, spring is best. Many woody trees and shrubs spend their winters setting root, in warm weather allocating energy above ground. With a few months to get settled, the new tree will have the winter to begin root development. We have a qualified arborist on staff that can help with selection and installation of your new investment!

    native trees of Dupage co, oaks of Winfield, Wheaton landscapes

    The state champion Bur oak of Mo. Approx. 250 + yrs old and  A giant! Recommended oak for our urban areas, does well with drought, pollutants etc  (click pic to see) Hannibal area.

     

    native trees, custom landscapes of Dupage county

    Old cedar trees: To think what these trees have witnessed over the eons!
    (native red cedar (Juniperus)


  6. Massive White Pine (P.strobus) in winter (click on pic)

    February 8, 2015 by MAX
    Arborsit info, maxlandscape.com, pine trees in the landscapes, max's greener places, Ed Max, arborist

    A grand specimen White pine, on the road close to Princeton’s cemetery, where the state’s largest pine exists.

    Pine and other evergreen materials add so much in our Midwestern winters and the landscapes. Seen here is a grand white pine dwarfing this  (late)  1800’s era home  in Princeton, Il. It would be my guess that this specimen has to be close to the age of the house, making it at least 125-150 yrs old.

     

     

     

     

     


  7. Naperville Il landscape design, Landscaping in Naperville, Il.

    April 3, 2014 by MAX

    Landscaper in Naperville, Il, maxlandscape.com, Ed Max, Paver walkways, brick patios

    We have an extensive clientele in Naperville and  the surrounding area. Call us or email to see our references and to see examples of our work go to   Maxlandscape.com