What Are the Main Types of Trees? Trees are a part of our ecosystem. And they play a silent but critical role in maintaining the balance as far as the environment is concerned.
What Are the Main Types of Trees?
They help replenish the supply of oxygen in the atmosphere on a continuous basis.
Trees make use of carbon-di-oxide in their process of photosynthesis.
Additionally, there are also a number of other reasons why trees are considered to be an important part of the ecosystem.
They play a major role in helping rainfall and preventing global warming.
Absorbing polluting agents and also preventing the impact of greenhouse dangers.
Hence, it is quite obvious that there are innumerable benefits and advantages associated with trees.
They also help in maintaining the food chain for human beings and other living creatures.
Herbivorous animals, birds, and other types of living beings.
Are totally dependent on their food from plants and trees.
Carnivorous animals, on the other hand, depend on these herbivores for their food supply.
Hence, plants and trees do play an extremely critical and vital role.
When it comes to maintaining the delicate natural balance as far as natural living is concerned.
In this article, we will understand the different types of trees and where they grow.
What benefits do they offer to the world in general and mankind in particular?
We also will touch base on the various aspects of caring for trees
WHAT IS UNIQUE AND SPECIAL ABOUT TREES?
Trees are commonly seen and are a part of our daily lives. They also have life though they are immobile. Many trees have a longer life when compared to other living beings in the world. There are some species of trees that can easily live for thousands of years.
They have been around on planet earth for almost 370 million years. And is considered to be one of the earliest forms of life. The earth perhaps has more than 60,000 species of trees. There could be many more that may not have been discovered by human beings.
They are certainly important for our daily lives.
And as we enjoy the good things on planet earth like water, natural food, and pure air. We need to be thankful to nature for providing us with different types and species of trees.
Imagine a world without trees. It would not be long before millions of human beings and other living things would just collapse and die. Because of lack of oxygen. Trees replenish the oxygen that we breathe in every second.
Let us not forget that there are more than 7 billion human beings in the world. Perhaps double this number of animals that live on the earth, in the water. Each one of them needs oxygen for living every minute.
Hence, we can be sure that all living things in this world will collapse within a few hours without trees.
WHAT EXACTLY IS A TREE?
Trees are considered to be perennial plants. They mostly have elongated trunks or stems. These trunks and stems support branches and leaves. Perennial plants have a long lifespan when compared to annual plants.
Annual plants have a life cycle of only a single season. Trees can also include many woody plants that have trunks and branches like any other annual or perennial tree. These woody trees grow much larger than the plants and trees around them.
A typical example is the bamboo tree that grows many feet tall, often up to 40 feet or more.
HOW TREES ARE ABLE TO BEAR SUCH HEAVYWEIGHT?
Big trees have strong and large trunks and the trunks extend deep underground in the form of roots. The roots help in collecting moisture and nutrients. And provide the trees with the necessary support for the huge structure above the ground.
Branches divide further and make up smaller shoots and they produce leaves. Leaves have an important role to play. They convert sunlight into energy through a process called photosynthesis. This is vital because they help in the development and growth of the tree.
Hence there is no doubt that the trunk is the strongest part of any tree. It is made from a strong woody tissue and it supports the entire weight of the canopy. The trunks also have vascular tissue and it carries vital nutrients to various parts of the tree, branches, and leaves.
MAJOR CATEGORIZATION OF TREES.
While there are more than 60,000 species of trees. For the purpose of convenience, they are broadly categorized into two major types. They are coniferous trees and deciduous trees. Let us learn more about them and they look at some other major types of trees.
Deciduous trees are the ones that lose their leaves during a certain time of the year. This occurs mostly during fall or autumn as it is called in many countries. The word deciduous refers to something that falls off at maturity.
Hence, it is quite obvious that these trees have an annual life cycle. The leaves again grow back during spring. They further mature to green color as summer comes. As the season nears autumn again, it is quite common to see a wonderful display of color pallets.
As the leaves again start falling on the ground leaving behind a colorful but drying carpet of leaves on the streets. This happens in many countries in Europe, North America, and many other countries that have a mild climate.
On the other hand, in tropical countries where the weather is hot. The deciduous trees lose their leaves during the dry season. Once the leaves have been lost. The trees look barren like wooden skeletons till such time new green shoots start appearing in the spring.
WHAT ABOUT CONIFEROUS TREES?
Coniferous trees are also known as evergreen trees. They have the capability of keeping their leaves intact all through the years. The trees do not change in appearance with changes in seasons. These trees often are seen with leaves that are needle-shaped.
They can withstand cold temperatures much better when compared to delicate trees with broad leaves. In winter, coniferous trees leave behind stunning scenery. Because most other trees and plant life would look barren and lifeless.
The common Christmas tree is perhaps one of the most common and simple examples of coniferous trees.
Most needle leaves in coniferous trees look long and thin. They generally grow in clusters and there are many such trees that are known to spread out sparsely. Some evergreen trees also have a tendency to lose their needles over a period of time.
However, this does not happen suddenly as it happens with most deciduous trees. The leaves are lost and they get replaced gradually. It is perhaps comparable to human beings who lose hair.
We are sure that the above would have helped the readers. To have some basic idea about the broad categories of deciduous and coniferous trees. Let us now have a look at some of the most common trees.
How to identify them and the attributes and characteristics that they may have.
Maple Trees are very common in some parts of Asia and also in America and Europe. Interestingly, the national flag of Canada features a maple leaf. It would be pertinent to mention that there are around one hundred species of maple trees.
The sycamore maple tree is the most common type in Europe. You also have other species and variants like sugar maple, red maple, and silver maple. Whenever you think of Bonsai, you perhaps will remember Japanese maple trees.
It is common to see small bonsai trees being kept in many Japanese homes as a miniature replicas.
These trees are used for making sweet syrup and it is mostly made from their sap. This could be the reason why many types of maple trees are farmed, grown, and cultivated. They also come in handy for making those tough baseball bats.
And is also regularly used in the construction industry. Maple trees also are used extensively for making different types of musical instruments. These trees are often classified as woody shrubs and they could reach a height of around 10 meters.
There are many towering maple trees that could reach a height of around 40 meters.
Oak trees are perhaps one of the most common types of trees in the world. The wood is known for its durability and hardness and they are extremely strong. They are resistant to almost all types of diseases that could affect trees.
There are many species of oak trees and in the USA alone, you could come across 90 species of oak trees. Globally, there could be around 300 species of oak trees. They can be further broken down into many types.
For example, white oak trees come with round leaves. They also have sweet acorns that may take almost a year for the acorns to mature. Red and Black oaks come with bristles on their leaves. They are known to produce acorns that have a bitter taste.
These acorns take around two years to mature and therefore they are also referred to as biennial oaks. Most oak trees are deciduous but there are a few oak trees that are evergreen. It is easy to identify an oak tree by its acorns.
Often sycamore maple is confused with sycamore trees. Their relationship is restricted to the name alone. Sycamore belongs to the family of hardwood trees. Wood is known for its density and hardness. It is not a commonly used building material.
These trees can reach a height of around 40 meters and they can therefore be easily identified. They also have a unique broadleaf and come with toothed edges and five lobes.
Pine trees are perhaps one of the most common trees and they are found literally all over the world. They are easily recognizable and belong to the world of coniferous groups. Also, are often considered to be ornamental trees and are known for their softwood.
They are also unique because of their green needles. It also is known to produce pine cones which are also known as hard cones. Red pine and white pine are the most common variants of pine trees. And they are found in abundance in Europe and North America.
They grow to huge heights. There are some species of these trees that are known to grow up to gorgeous heights of 81 meters. They grow at rapid speeds. This is the reason why they are considered to be one of the most sought-after trees for furniture and construction.
It has softwood that is easy to use and has some other attractive features.
These trees remember us of Christmas and are also known as Christmas trees. Noble fir, balsam fir, and Fraser fir are commonly used for festive occasions. It belongs to the coniferous group of trees and remains evergreen.
There are more than 50 species of these trees. They are related to cedar trees. And have a green and full appearance. They have what is known as fir needles and they are flat and soft.
Also, come in different colors such as blue, purpose, and green and they tend to turn golden brown as they grow and mature.
They are often referred to as forest trees because they are found mostly in woods and forests. And could be classified as semi-deciduous or deciduous groups of trees. They are around 35 different species including European Elm, American elm, and many others.
It is a beautiful ornamental tree. They are hardwood trees and therefore not used as a building material.
Willow trees are popular for a number of reasons. They have unique and distinctive shapes. They have drooping branches and are known for their majestic and striking appearance. There are around 400 species of willow trees and all of them belong to the deciduous category.
They are of medium height or could also be low-growing shrubs. The leaves are oval-shaped and elongated. They have furrowed and black barks. The leaves can be blue, yellow, or green and they are therefore considered to be one of the most beautiful trees on planet earth.
The wood from willow is useful and is used for making wicker baskets. They do lose leaves in winter but are the last trees to shed their leaves.
If you wish to plant in your garden, it is quite likely that you will have Magnolia trees in your mind. They come both as evergreen and deciduous types and are known to grow in many different types of climates and environments.
They have flowers that have beautiful fragrances. The fruits resemble berries and the leaves belong to the broadleaf category. They are medium-sized trees and have softwood and grow fast. And are easy to identify because of the shape of their leaves and their fruits.
They are used for making furniture because they belong to the softwood category.
There is no connection between tulip flowers and tulip trees. It is named so perhaps because of the green and yellow-colored flowers that make up the trees. The wood is great to look at but is not known for its strength.
It serves aesthetic purposes more rather than being used in construction. The bark when the tree is young is ashy gray in color and as it matures the bark color becomes dark. It grows well in moist and rich soil.
Birch trees belong to the hardwood group of trees and there are some sixty species of this tree. The wood from birch is useful for making furniture and also for use as firewood. The bark of the tree is silver or white in color making it attractive.
The color of the bark also makes it easy to identify the tree. The branches are long and they have a slight droop. The trees also provide oil that is used for medicine and also for cooking purposes. They have small leaves.
These trees are identifiable because of their green balls. Butternut trees belong to the deciduous group of trees. They are slow-growing and are found in the United States and Canada. The nuts that it grows are edible and it grows well in moist soil.
The nuts look like green balls when they are on the tree. They have grey barks and the barks tend to become rough and jagged with age. It is a tree without stems, and the leaves grow directly from the branch.
These are large trees and they can reach a height of around 50 meters. They belong to the Pinaceae family. They are commonly used as ornamental trees and also are used as bonsai. The trees have a special fragrance. It is commonly used for making men’s toiletries.
The above would have given a reasonably good idea about the various types of trees. And also a few things about the two major categories of trees under which all the above types of trees have been classified.
HOW TO TAKE CARE OF TREES?
We have learned a few things about the fantastic benefits that trees and plants offer to us. They serve us faithfully for decades, years and centuries. Hence, we have a duty towards trees. Planting saplings is just one part of the story.
We should know how to take care of them. Hence we thought it would be a good idea to round off this article. By sharing a few things about the best way to maintain trees at least in your home and surroundings.
The trees in the wild and in the jungles survive on their own.
But nearer home the trees suffer from the impact of pollution and other man-made disasters. Make sure that the trees are planted in the right place. The place should provide enough sunlight for it to grow.
Also, keep in mind that trees grow large in size. Therefore the place where you plant them should have enough space to allow them to grow normally. There should not be a situation where you may be forced to cut the trees because of a lack of space.
Ensure that they get adequate water. If you are planting a sapling in your home, ensure that they get enough water.
The water should not be too much or too less. As a sapling, ensure that it is not submerged in water.
When the saplings grow into young trees, ensure that they are properly watered during summer. Also, ensure that there are enough avenues for excess water to get drained out.
Importance of mulching. Mulch plays a big role in insulating tree roots. It also protects them from inadvertent mower cuts and damages. Dry soil can also be prevented with the use of mulching.
Importance of fertilizing. If you are growing a tree, in your home, understand the importance of fertilizing it adequately.
In forests and other natural surroundings. The natural materials, the animal droppings, the bird droppings. And other such things do the work of natural fertilizers. This may not be possible in homes where trees are grown in backyards and gardens.
Hence, make sure that the trees are fertilized properly. You should stay away from over-fertilizing or under-fertilizing. Pruning is another important thing you must bear in mind. Pruning in a home environment is vital.
Because it ensures that the tree grows the right way and has the right structure. Pruning helps to remove deadwood. The major portion of pruning should be done when the tree is dormant and fall could be a good season for deciduous trees.
Regular checkups of trees may also be needed because of a number of reasons.
It could help identify diseases and infections that trees are prone to. Professional service providers will be able to identify these problems in a proactive manner rather than being reactive about them.
They also help to extend the life of the trees. And if you are using them for commercial purposes, these checkups will increase your profitability for sure.
Trees are precious and they are one of the best gifts of nature to us. Even the best of science today or even after thousands of years. May not be able to come out with something. That could help exhale oxygen while inhaling carbon dioxide.
Plants and trees also protect the environment and are indispensable against greenhouse effects. And also for assisting in normal rainfalls. They also help in the erosion of water beds and prevent large-scale floods.
We believe that the above article may have helped the readers to gain some useful insight into the different types of trees.