University of Florida

Tree Identification

For years, curious gardeners have used keys and guides to identify unknown trees. These tools can help you make a series of observations about a tree and then discover its identity.

They may ask you to look at the overall shape of the tree, noting if it's broad and wide, tall and cone-shaped, or something in between. The color and texture of the bark is another important clue.

Then decide if the tree has needles, needle-like leaves, or broad leaves, and observe their size, shape, and arrangement. Pay attention to the pattern of the veins on the leaves. Finally, look to see if there are any fruit or cones.

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