Essay on woods
At the bottom of these hills, next to the creeks, grow great Sweetgums and Sycamores. You will find Jack in the Pulpits, Wood Nettle, Jewelweed, and a large diversity of other plants that enjoy the moist soil.
Uphill from the creeks, our giant Tuliptrees grow well over 100 feet straight up. The understory at this height is replete with spicebush and paw-paws. Other common trees include Persimmon, Sassafras, Beech, and Sugar Maple. As you walk further up the hill, you will find increasing numbers of hickories and oaks, such as Shagbark Hickory, Mockernut Hickory, White Oak, and Red Oak.
At the top of the hills are the Chestnut Oak forests. We suspect these to be the oldest communities, with many trees well in excess of 200 years old. The typical trunk diameter-at-breast-height (DBH) of the dominant Chestnut Oaks is two to three feet. Below, you will find sourwoods in the midstory, and a thick understory of of sassafras saplings waiting to take advantage of a gap of sunlight that a falling Chestnut Oak may leave. Also common in the understory are Azaleas and Blueberries enveloped in a thorny tangle of Greenbriars.