Trees of Dickinson County: Basswood

It seems like, when people list the trees of Iowa, that many don’t think about, or possibly know about, basswood (Tilia americana). However, basswood is a common tree that occurs statewide and is often interspersed with maples and oaks. Size Basswoods grow 75-100 feet or more, and they grow quickly. If planted at the same…

Read More

Trees of Dickinson County: Cottonwood

If you walk around the Iowa Great Lakes, you’ll see plenty of towering cottonwood trees (Populus deltoides). They live to be 80-100 years old, although they have weak branches that struggle to withstand ice and rain. The heartwood of the trunk tends to rot inside a cottonwood, and sometimes when branches break off, that allows small…

Read More

Celebrate Arbor Day with a tree cookie maze

Lucky is a woodland leprechaun who makes her home in a tree, so naturally, she loves trees! She is helping us celebrate Arbor Day and trees each day of the year. Watch her lesson on trees and then click the tree cookie maze photo to download a free printable maze!

Read More

Trees of Dickinson County: Oak

Iowa’s state tree is the oak, although the State Legislature never designated a specific species of oak. The state has 12 species of native oak trees: Pin oak Red oak Shingle oak Northern pin oak Black oak Blackjack oak White oak Bur oak Swamp white oak Chinkapin Post oak Dwarf chinkapin oak Of those, two…

Read More

Thumbprint tree

The world has about 3 trillion trees and more than 60,000 different species. However, trees are very specific to their environments. More than half of the tree species in the world only grow in a certain country. Trees are positives for the environment for so many reasons, from absorbing excess carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen…

Read More

Fall leaf color guide

Fall is a beautiful time to take a drive to look at all of the beautiful trees changing color. Leaves begin to change color because of the lack of chlorophyll that is present in the spring and summer, revealing the other colors in the leaves that is present beneath the green. The colors present in…

Read More

This turkey is unbe-leaf-ably cute

To go along with our blog about turkeys this week (read it here), we thought we might as well make a turkey-themed nature craft too. You will just need a few supplies: Turkey template printed on white paper (Find the template here) Leaves White computer paper Crayons Scissors Glue Begin with a trek outside. Pick…

Read More

Why do evergreen trees stay green?

Read More

My Giving Tree craft

Crafts don’t always come together the way you think they will. I had a brilliant idea this morning to make place cards with leaf etchings on them, and I tried it out. Yikes. Ugly. If you come up with something pretty with that idea, let me know. So instead, I decided to post how to…

Read More

Perfect Halloween nature craft: Spooky leaves!

Seasonal crafts that you can make with supplies you find outside are some of the best crafts. And what is there in abundance at this time of year? Leaves! So, for this craft, your first goal is to head outside with the kiddos and pick up three to five of your favorite leaves. We have…

Read More