Maple leaves changing colour in the fall

Maple leaves changing colour in the fall

Although our property obviously has a lot of sugar maple trees (Acer saccharum), there are other species too. Some trees close to the sugarshack are marked with wooden signs that have a number on them and can be flipped up to see the tree information. We talk about these trees on school tours but these are handy for self-guided tours as well. We have trails of different lengths marked throughout the sugarbush that you are welcome to walk along.

Shortly after the sap stops running is an exciting time to get out in the sugarbush to see the flowers that bloom in early spring. These plants use the short period of time after the snow melts and before all the trees produce their leaves where there’s still lots of bright light that reaches the forest floor.

We have a lot of red trilliums, trout lilies and spring beauties. If you look hard enough you can find painted trilliums, pink lady’s slippers, jack-in-the-pulpits, dutchman’s breetches, soloman’s seal, false solomon’s seal, rose-twisted stalk and many others

In the summer, the bush is very green from all the tree canopy. We have many kinds of ferns and mosses. Some interesting plants are indian pipe and beech drops, which are both parasitic plants that lack chlorophyll. They get their nutrients through a fungi from other plants.

In the fall of course the bush is beautiful with all the leaves changing colours.

List of Species that can be found at Matthews Maple Sugar Bush

Sugar Maple – Acer saccharum
Balsam Fir – Abies balsamea
White Spruce – Picea glauca
Eastern Hemlock – Tsuga canadensis
Ironwood – Ostrya virginiana
White Ash – Fraxinus americana
Black Cherry – Prunus serotina
Basswood – Tilia americana
White Birch – Betula papyrifera
Yellow Birch – Betula alleghaniensis
Red Maple – Acer rubrum
Beech – Fagus grandifolia
Poplar (Trembling Aspen) – Populus tremuloides
Red Oak – Quercus rubra
Red Pine – Pinus resinosa
White Pine – Pinus strobus
Striped Maple – Acer pensylvanicum
Common Hobblebush – Viburnum alnifolium

Starflower – Trientalis borealis
Bunchberry – Cornus canadensis
Broad-Leaved Toothwort – Cardamine diphylla
Dutchman’s Breeches – Dicentra cucullaria
Carolina Spring Beauty – Claytonia caroliniana
Common Blue Eyed Grass – Sisyrinchium montanum
Painted Trillium – Trillium undalatum
Red Trillium – Trillium erectum
Hairy Solomon’s Seal – Polygonatum pubescens
White Mandarin – Streptopus amplexifolius
Rose-Twisted Stalk – Streptopus roseus
Canada Mayflower – Maianthemum canadense
False Solomon’s Seal – Maianthemum racemosum
Trout Lily – Erythronium americanum
Wild Leek – Allium tricoccum
Small Jack-in-the-Pulpit – Arisaema triphyllum
Beech Drops – Epifagus virginiana
Pink Lady’s Slipper – Cypripedium acaule
Indian Pipe – Monotropa uniflora