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Trees in the Metro Parks


Trees in the Metro Parks

Trees provide benefits to animals and humans alike. Here are just a few types of trees you could find in the Metro Parks:

American Beech Tree

Fagus grandifolia

The bark of the American beech tree is steel gray and very smooth. Its leaves range from 3 to 6 inches long and change from glossy green to a coppery-yellow in the fall. The fruit is made up of a prickly outer husk that splits open in late summer to reveal one or two triangular nuts.

When & Where to See it

Large beech trees can be seen throughout our parks, including Furnace Run Metro Park, Goodyear Heights Metro Park and F.A. Seiberling Nature Realm.

Fun Fact

Beech tree nuts are eaten by opossums, squirrels, chipmunk and deer.

American Sycamore

Platanus occidentalis

The trunk of the American sycamore tree has a unique color pattern of green, red and tan; some suggest it resembles camouflage. Its leaves are the largest of any tree in Summit County, measuring more than 8 inches wide. Twigs of the sycamore tree form a zigzag pattern and are orange-brown in color.

When & Where to See it

The sycamore tree prefers moist soil, so look for it near water.

Fun Fact

Hollows of old sycamores are often used by wood ducks as nesting sites.

Black Cherry

Prunus serotina

The bark of the black cherry tree is dark and flaky; some say it resembles burnt cornflakes. The leaves can grow 5 inches long and 2 inches wide. In the fall, black cherry leaves turn a vibrant yellow. The cherries are about a third of an inch around and change in color from orange to red to black. Robins, cedar waxwings and other wildlife eat this fruit.

When & Where to See it

Black cherry trees are common throughout Summit County.

Fun Fact

Black cherry wood is used to make cabinets, furniture and musical instruments.

Ohio Buckeye

Aesculus glabra

The leaves of the Ohio buckeye have five to seven leaflets and resemble the fingers on a hand. Every year, the buckeye loses its leaves before most other trees in Ohio. The smooth, shiny, brown and tan nut of the buckeye tree grows in a slightly spiny husk.

When & Where to See it

Buckeye trees love moist soil, so look for them near water at Deep Lock Quarry and Furnace Run Metro Parks.

Fun Fact

This tree is sometimes called the “stinking” buckeye because of the unpleasant odor of its flowers and broken twigs.

Northern Red Oak

Quercus rubra

The bark of the red oak is dark gray with deep grooves and flat ridges that make it appear as though the tree has stripes. Large leaves have seven to 11 pointed lobes and turn a brilliant red in the fall. Acorns are red to light brown and drop from the trees in late summer.

When & Where to See it

Red oaks can be seen at Gorge, Firestone and O’Neil Woods Metro Parks.

Fun Fact

It takes acorns two years to mature before they fall from the tree.