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  1. Sugar Maple Tree

    Discover the beautiful sugar maple tree, found in the northeastern United States. Not only does the processed sap of the tree produce three quarters of the maple sugar crop, but the lumber is used in making fine floors and furniture. Learn More
  2. Poison Ivy

    Don't let the milky sap of this poisonous plant get under your skin! It's bound to cause inflammation. Truly, any part of the poison ivy plant, when broken open, can produce its sticky irritant, which works as a defense mechanism. Learn More
  3. Trees

    What makes a tree a tree? Explore this question by comparing tree specimens to other plant specimens. Create a forest in your classroom, make tree field guides based on observations of the specimens in this box, and examine cross-sections of tree branches to learn how their rings tell the history of its growth! Learn More
  4. Black Oak

    With over eighty kinds of oaks native to North America, the most common oak in Chicago is a giant. The Black Oak can soar to well over one hundred feet, with a trunk diameter stretching seven feet across. This tree grows best in clay or on dry, sandy hillsides and can live to almost two hundred years. This display examines the different aspects of the Oak tree with specimens from both the male and female flowers, as well as a flowering tree. Learn More
  5. Climbing Nightshade

    Recognize this common member of the potato family? The climbing nightshade is unusual in that its most vibrant color comes in the form of winter berries, found frequently in the wooded areas around Chicago. Learn More
  6. Winter Tree Identification

    Ever wonder how to differentiate between the leafless trees of the Chicago winter? Take a closer look at the twigs of nice different trees and you will find identifying characteristics. Learn More
  7. Paper

    Ever wonder how a tree like the one in your backyard becomes the paper in your school notebook? Delve into the processing of paper from wood, only one of the materials paper is commonly made from. Learn More
  8. Common Oaks

    Get to know the oaks of the Chicago region. The leaves, stems, and acorns of a variety of Red and White oaks exhibit the diversity that can happen within a species. Learn More
  9. Yellow Adder's Tongue

    Check out this pretty yellow flower, pictured here in a forest setting, that grows abundantly in the Chicago area and in the Eastern United States. Also known as the Trout Lily, this moisture loving plant blooms early in the spring in woods and thickets. Learn More
  10. Yellow Poplar (Tulip Tree)

    The blossoms of this massive tree may fool you into thinking it's related to the tulip flower, but it is really a Yellow Poplar. Known to reach heights of up to 200 feet, this tree produces a light, soft lumber with a wide range of utilitarian purposes. Learn More

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