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Botanical Classification through Taxonomy (Becoming and Arborist Class 5)

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Subscribe to have your tree knowledge of trees increased! And if you know more, please share and make Arboriculture in the Southwest better.

Today we continue our study through Arboriculture covering the basics of plant ID.

Botanical Classification was developed in the 1900’s and is now widely used through the system of Taxonomy to properly Identify, Classify and Name (nomenclature) our plants.

The Classification is as such...

1. Kingdom
2. Division
3. Class
4. Order
5. Family
6. Genus
7. Species

By Understanding this classification system you can further identify and properly care for your trees.

Understanding Scientific names of trees are what is required of an Arborist and learning them all will take time. Knowing the basics will help you get there.

Your scientific name is made up of the Genus and the Species.

Genus should be capitalized
Species should be Lowe case and italics or underline.

Common names are not capital or underline or italics.

Below the comments I will put a list of common and scientific names of trees common in the southwest for you to reference.

There is a lot of risk in using common names and over time the more you can get our of the habit the better off you will be. The reason is not to sound smart but to properly identify a tree which is a requirement of proceeding with a care plan. In the southwest we have 5 different types of mesquites and all need different care.

Identifying trees is done by flower, fruit, bark, leaves, structure, smell, taste and any other method you can use that does not damage the tree.

Understanding leaves.

There are simple and compound leaves. Some are opposite and some are alternate. Conifers needles can ID a tree by how many clusters or if they are single.

Over time you will develop a wide knowledge by understanding the basics of Botanical Classification through Taxonomy.


We hope this helps!

Until next time.

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