Ithan Valley Park - The Big Trees

Ithan Valley Park is a remnant piece of an old estate which was left when the Blue Route was put together. A mill predated the estate, remains of which are located near the parking area. The owners of the Mill and the Estate were keenly interested in botany and collected trees from both North America and the Old World. A group was formed to identify any trees that are either old enough to have been part of the original collection or seedlings of those trees. Yellow tape was placed around 22 trees (listed below) which are numbered and roughly located taking the old driveway up from the parking area.

Type of Tree
1. White Oak Quercus alba (possibly a Burr Oak, Q. macrocarpa), 52 inches.
2. Fir Abies Sp. several trees near the above oak.
3. Fir Abies sp. on the right side of the drive.
4.  Black Walnut Juglans nigra
5.  Tulip Tree Liriodendron tulipifera, 40 inches.
6. Sugar Maple Acer saccharum, 12 feet further to left.
7. Magnolia acuminata Likely the largest M. acuminata in the area, probably part of the original estate plantings. Though native to North America, it is not native to this area.
8.  Yellowwood Cladrastis Kentukea, lean out over drive; The original Yellowwood would have been part of the estate plantings. It is native to North America, but not this area. There are several smaller Yellowwood on the property.
9.  Oak, (Red?) Quercus Sp. 40+ inches. Large incheswidowmaker inches hanging on it.
10.   Scarlet Oak Quercus coccinea, 48+ inches. Tall straight tree, 80 feet to the first crotch.
11. White Oak Quercus alba, 20 inches.
12.  Buckeye
Aesculus glabra, Native to North America, but not this area.
13.  California Incense Cedar
Calocedrus decurrens, 60 inches. Left side of drice towards the Blue Route. Incense Cedars are native to the west coast and are rarely planted here.
14. False Cypress Chamaecyparis pisifera 'squarrosa.' In the same group as evergreens. Native to Japan.
15. Elm Ulmus sp. Not Asian, possibly American?
16.  Rhododendron Rhododendron sp. Possibly Asian species or hybrid. Top right side of drive.
17. Tulip Tree L. tulipifera, 45+ inches. Over top of drive and 20 feet downhill of chain link fence.
18. European Linden Tilla cordata. Native to Europe and western Asia. Right side of millrace path.
19.  Sycamore Leaf Maple Acer pseudoplantanus. European species, right side of millrace path.
20. Tulip Tree L. Tulipifera, 72+ inches.
21. Cork Tree Phellodendron amurense, Asian species.
 22. Cucumbertree Magnolia  Eastern United States  4-10 inches long
23.  Zelkova Zelkova serrata. Next to gravel parking area, eastern Asia
 24.  American Linden  Eastern North America
 25.  White Ash  Eastern and Central North America
 26.  Black Oak  Black oak leafs are four to ten inches long, with seven to nine inch lobes.
 27.  Sourwood  Southeastern United States

Other Types of Plants
It was also noted that there were many other interesting woody and herbaceous plants in the park. To list a few:
  • American Beech
  • Ferns
  • Native ginger
  • Smaller Buckeyes
  • Snow Drops
  • Winter Aconite
Special Thanks
A special thanks to the Ithan Valley Tree Identification Committee for compiling this list:
  • Jane Golas
  • Peter Kingsbery
  • John Nagle
  • Bill Thomas
  • John Ward