eField Guide - Forestry Session


Native woody plants of western Virginia and eastern West Virginia.

Minimum number of fully-documented species is 15, with an additional 10 to 20 species with photos and tentative identification.
Checklist (Right-click to download.)

For each fully-documented species, you must have:

Common name
Latin name (italicized!)
Family / subfamily (as appropriate)
Photos, scans, and/or illustrations (minimum of 3)
Date and location of photograph(s) and/or collection
Description; identifying characteristics
Citation of source(s) used for species identification
Remarks / Comments

Photographs, scans, and illustrations must be original to you. You may not use Internet images or scan photos or illustrations from guidebooks. Include the source of any information not observed by you.

You will need a minimum of 3 photos for each species. You must have photos of a leaf and bark. Suggestions for the third photo include: underside of leaf, seed, flower, twig, overall tree, canopy, or any other photo that would be useful for identifying the species.

Ornamental and non-native species are not acceptable. The following species in your woody plants book are not acceptable:

Page 2: Yew, China-Fir
Page 3: Arborvitae, Norway Spruce, "True" Cedars
Page 6: Norway Maple*
Page 9: Common Privet*, Japanese Honeysuckle*
Page 10: Paulownia*
Page 11: Mimosa*
Page 12: Multiflora Rose*
Page 13: Kudzu*
Page 15: European Mountain-Ash
Page 16: Ailanthus* ("Tree of Heaven"), Chinese Wisteria*
Page 17: Bittersweet*
Page 18: Autumn Olive*
Page 21: White Willow, Weeping Willow
Page 22: Lombardy Poplar, White Poplar*
Page 23: Common Pear, Common Apple
Page 24: Sweet Cherry, Peach
Page 26: Sawtooth Oak, Willow Oak (native to piedmont, not mountains)
Page 27: Chinese Chestnut
Page 29: Ginkgo
Page 32: Japanese Barberry*
Page 33: European White Birch
Page 34: Siberian Elm, Chinese Elm
Species marked with an asterisk (*) are invasive pests. Complete removal of plants is desirable, and they certainly should not be planted as ornamentals!

You may not do your collecting in homes and gardens. You should have species from each of our field trips:

Roaring Run, (you should be able to get at least 25 species here)
Greenbrier State Forest
Cranberry Glades and Cranberry Mountain Nature Center
Douthat State Park, opportunity for additional photos

The following common species should be in your collection:

Eastern White Pine
Virginia Pine
Eastern Hemlock
Hickory (at least one of Shagbark, Mockernut, or Pignut)
American Beech
Northern Red Oak
White Oak
Chestnut Oak
Slippery Elm
Yellow-Poplar (Tulip Poplar)
Black Cherry
Black Locust
Sugar Maple
Red Maple
Striped Maple
Yellow Buckeye
Black Gum
Flowering Dogwood

Each species should be presented on one or more pages. You may create your field guide in a number of formats (but the entire guide must be in one format).

PowerPoint presentation [Example]
Word document(s) (If you are using Word, we highly recommend that each species be a separate file.) [Example]
Web page [Example]
Scrapbook (photos glued/taped to neatly-written pages)
Include a Title Page and Table of Contents. Your species should be taxonomically arranged. (For example by family, then genus, then species, as appropriate for your collection.)

Fact sheets from the Virginia Tech dendrology site (dendro.cnre.vt.edu/dendrology/factsheets.cfm) give an excellent pattern to follow.

If you have access to a scanner, scans can give excellent images for a field guide. If you are scanning 3-dimensional objects (e.g. seeds, most flowers), line a small box with white paper and place it over the object before you scan. Leaves can usually be scanned flat. Be sure you clean the glass of your scanner after using it -- natural objects can leave behind debris!



Number of Species
more than 25
more than 15 fully documented
15 fully documented
less than 25
less than 15 fully documented
Species Description
Includes all required elements plus remarks; more than one photo or illustration per species; all species are correctly identified. Includes all required elements; all species are correctly identified. Missing some required elements; some species may be misidentified.
Includes a title page and table of contents; species are organized in a taxonomic order. Includes a title page and table of contents. Unorganized
Photographs and illustrations are clear; presentation on page is visually appealing; correct spelling throughout. Photographs and illustrations are clear; correct spelling throughout. No consistency in pages; has the look of having been "thrown together" -- perhaps at the last minute.
Source(s) for species identification are given. Source(s) for species identification are given. Source(s) for species identification not given.
Oral Presentation
Presentation is smooth and well planned. Presentation is smooth and well planned. Presentation is haphazard and unorganized.
Field Notebook
Entry for each species with date and location of photographs. Notes useful for identification. Entry for each species with date and location of photographs. Minimal field identification.


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Updated 6/15/16