Q:

How do you identify common trees in California?

A:

Quick Answer

Identify common trees in California by looking at tree identification guides available online at the Urban Tree Key, California Forest Foundation, Arbor Day and Tree Leaf Key on About.com websites. Either peruse the different trees native to California and the lists of their characteristics, or follow the prompts and answer the questions to narrow down the identification.

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Full Answer

Identify California trees by going to the Urban Tree Key website and selecting the type of foliage the tree has. Choose between palm fronds, sword-shaped fronds, leaves, or needles or scales. Depending on the selection, choices narrow down and new questions are available. For instance, selecting the leaves option leads to the options of tiny leaves or normal-sized leaves.

If you choose palm fronds, the next choices are fronds in a fan shape, feather or pinnate shape or fishtail shape. The key also uses the trunk to help identify the tree. Finally, an identification is available. About.com offers a tree identification key similar to the Urban Tree Key Website.

The California Forest Foundation lists common California trees. Peruse the offerings, and select the tree that resembles the one your are trying to identify. The Arbor Day Foundation uses the same process, but the database of trees offers not only a description, but a picture of the leaves and fruit.

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