What Am I Looking At?
Ring Around a Tree
Counting the rings of a tree can tell you how old it is, and can provide historical information on local conditions. When there was a drought or the tree had a rough growing season, the rings are close together. If the rings are wide and far apart, it means it was an optimal growing season for the tree.
The annual rings of a tree are made each year when a new layer of wood is added to the trunk and branches of the tree.
There are two parts to an annual ring—a light portion and a darker portion. The light section is called springwood. This part of the ring is usually widest because the tree does most of its growing in the spring when there is more moisture. The darker part, summerwood, is thinner, because the growth slows down and finally stops for the year in the fall.
Identify a Leaf
Being able to identify the leaves around you is a good way to be able to tell what types of habitat you are in.