The walk here cuts through a young forest that arose from an old field. It developed when woody shrubs such as red cedar (Juniperis virginiaia), blackhaw (Viburnum prunifolium), arrowwood (V.dentatum/recognitum) and maple-leaf viburnum (V.acerfolium) shaded out the grasses and wildflowers. These shrubs ultimately will form the lower layer of the maturing forest as the taller maples, tulip poplars and oaks become more numerous. In this region an oak-dominated forest is typically the final stage of succession. Most stages of this type of succession are present at Ladew.
Virburnums produce fruits that feed many birds and mammals.
Arrowwood is so named because Native Americans once used its straight
branches for arrow shafts.
View a map of the Nature Walk