A Tree Mystery to Solve
In my last post , I mentioned talking to my gardener about some changes in my back yard at the Paso Robles house. We walked around the back yard and I showed him a tree that had sprouted up next to a rose bush. What ever it is, it needs to come out. This is the tree.
I asked if it might be a Tree of Heaven, a very weedy tree that has been known to grow wild around the city, though I haven't seen any around here, and they should be bearing long brown pods about now. The gardener told me that, no, it was just another Goldenrain tree . But I see some big differences. In the first photo, above, which you can enlarge by opening a new tab, is a comparison between a young leave stem of each, and then, in the right corner, a comparison of a leaf from each.
You can see that the leaves have a different shape. Also, if you look very carefully at the top leaf stem, where it dips down at the right end, you will see a thorn. The Goldenrain tree does not have any thorns on either the young or established trees . It also has beautiful brown pods at this time of year that look like little Chinese lanterns.
If you look carefully at the mystery tree, you will see it is growing next to a Cecile Brunner climbing rose. Right behind the tree in the photo, you can see another even taller identical tree. If you look at that other tree from the ground up, you will see it's mixed in with stems from the rose bush that almost appears to come from the same plant, except that the sucker-like stems from the two plants are very different in color and texture.
About the time I started thinking the rose and the tree might actually be just the rose, I noticed that the Cecile Brunner leaves look like this.
Notice that they are saw-toothed at the edges and have pointed tips. The leaf of the mystery plant in the intro photo is a deeper green, and has no point at the top or “teeth” along the edges.
I noticed that my neighbor has a rather tall tree with similar leaf shape and coloring (from a distance) less than ten feet from my mystery trees. She's not home, so I can't get a closer look to help me see if it's like my trees. If so, what I might have is a sucker from that tree that could have sprung up right next to an established Cecile Brunner climber and their branches might have gotten mixed up to that they look like one tree. Or, maybe the Cecile Brunner has a different rootstock and its suckers are mixing with the grafted rose so it looks like one plant. The mystery is spraining my brain right now, and I still don't know why the mystery tree, which, as far as I can tell, bears no roses , has thorns.
Do any of you rose gardeners have an answer? Any arborists who can identify my mystery tree? I just may need to go visit a local tree nursery for answers.
Pictures and content are original and may not be used without permission, B. Radisavljevic, Copyright 2014, All Rights Reserved
Image Credit » I took the photo