wpe5.jpg (2127 bytes)U.P. TREE  IDENTIFICATION  KEY
from Michigan State University Extension

TAXONOMY OF TREES & SHRUBS IN THE UNITED STATES
(or at least a good try at it!)


TREE & SHRUB ORDERS AND FAMILIES
   For those interested in the bigger taxonomic picture, this list includes most families which contain tree & shrub species within the USA.   Families with representatives in the northeastern USA have common names in
(parentheses), but this is not necessarily complete.  Some of the families are obscure, monotypic, and/or alien.  Some have been commercially introduced from outside the United States.  One or two families may have been reclassified or renamed.
   All classifications belong to the Division Spermotophyta (seed-bearing, true flowers).  The names used for particular botanical classification units vary from source to source.  Represented are
2 Classes,
2 Subclasses, 4 Super Orders, 36 Orders, and 115 Families.

Class 1. GYMNOSPERMAE
     Order 1. Ginkgoales

           Family 1.  Ginkgoaceae
(gingko)
     Order 2. Coniferales
           Family 2.  Taxaceae
(yews)
           Family 3.  Araucariaceae
(araucaria)
           Family 4.  Pinaceae
(pines, firs, spruces, larches)

          
Family 5.  Taxodiaceae (redwoods)
          
Family 6.  Cupressaceae (cypress, cedars)
    
Order 3. Gnetales
       Family 7.  Ephedraceae

Class 2. ANGIOSPERMAE (flowering plants)
Subclass 1. DICOTYLENDONAE (seeds with two "leaves")
  
Super Order 1. AMENTIFERAE (catkins)
     Order 1. Salicales
      Family 8. Salicaceae
(willows, aspen)
     Order 2. Garryales ?
       Family 9. Garryaceae ?
     Order 3. Myricales
       Family 10. Myricaceae
(waxmyrtle)
     Order 4. Leitneriales
           Family 11. Leitneriaceae
(corkwood)
     Order 5. Juglandales
           Family 12. Juglandaceae
(butternut, walnut)
     Order 6. Fagales
           Family 13. Betulaceae
(birches)
           Family 14. Fagaceae
(oak, beech)
   Super Order 2. APETALAE  (flowers without petals)
     Order 1. Urticales
           Family 15. Ulmaceae
(elms)
           Family 16. Moraceae
(mulberry)
           Family 17. Urticaceae
(nettles)
     Order 2. Santalales
           Family 18. Santalaceae
(sandal-wood)
           Family 19. Loranthaceae
(mistletoe)
     Order 3. Aristolochiales
           Family 20. Aristolochiaceae
(birthwort)
     Order 4. Polygonales
           Family 21. Polygonaceae
(smartweed)
     Order 5. Centrospermae
           Family 22. Chenopodiaceae
(goosefoot)
           Family 23. Caryophyllaceae
(pinks)
   Super Order 3. POLYFLORAE  (flowers with separate petals)
     Order 1. Ranales
           Family 24. Ranunculaceae
(crowfoot)
           Family 25. Lardizabalaceae
           Family 26.Sargentodoxaceae
           Family 27. Berberidaceae
(barberry)
           Family 28. Menispermaceae
(moonseed)
           Family 29. Trochodendraceae
           Family 30. Cercidiphyllaceae
           Family 31. Magnoliacae
(magnolia)
           Family 32. Calycanthaceae
           Family 33 Annonaceae
           Family 34.Lauraceae
(laurel)
     Order 2. Rhoeadales
           Family 35. Cruciferae
(mustards)
     Order 3. Rosiflorae
           Family 36. Crassulaceae
(orpine)
           Family 37. Saxifragaceae
(saxifrage)
           Family 38. Hamamelidaceae
(witch hazel)
           Family 39. Eucommiaceae
           Family 40. Platanaceae
(sycamore)
           Family 41. Rosaceae
(cherries, etc.)
           Family 42. Fabaceae
(peas, legumes)
     Order 4. Geraniales
           Family 43. Zygophyllaceae
(caltrops)
           Family 44. Rutaceae
(rue)
           Family 45. Simarubaceae
           Family 46. Meliaceae
(mahogany)
           Family 47. Polygalaceae
(milkwort)
           Family 48. Euphorbiaceae
(spurge)
     Order 5. Sapindales
           Family 49. Buxaceae
           Family 50. Empetraceae
(crowberry)
           Family 51. Coriariaceae ??
           Family 52. Anacardiaceae
(sumac)
           Family 53.  Cyrillaceae
           Family 54. Aquifoliaceae
(holly)
           Family 55. Celastraceae (bittersweet)
           Family 56. Staphyleaceae
(bladder-nut)
           Family 57. Aceraceae
(maples)
           Family 58. Hippocastanaceae
(horse-chestnut)
           Family 59. Sapindaceae
(soapberry)
           Family 60. Sabiaceae
     Order 6. Rhamnales
           Family 61. Rhamnaceae
(buckthorn)
           Family 62. Vitaceae
(grape)
     Order 7. Mavales
           Family 63. Tiliaceae
(basswood)
           Family 64. Malvaceae
(mallow)
           Family 65. Sterculiaceae
     Order 8. Parietales
           Family 66. Actinidiaceae
           Family 67. Eucryphiaceae
           Family 68. Theaceae
(tea)
           Family 69. Hypericaceae
(St. Johnswort)
           Family 70. Tamaricaceae
(tamarisk)
           Family 71. Cistaceae
(rockrose)
           Family 72. Violaceae
(violet)
           Family 73.  Flacourtiaceae
           Family 74. Stachyuraceae
     Order 9. Opuntiales
           Family 75. Cactaceae
(cacti)
     Order 10. Myrtiflorae
           Family 76. Thymelaeaceae
(leatherwood)
           Family 77. Elaeagnaceae
(Russian olive)
           Family 78. Lythraceae
(loosestrife)
           Family 79. Punicaceae
(pomegranate)
           Family 80. Nyssaceae
(tupelo)
           Family 81. Alangiaceae
           Family 82. Myrtaceae
(myrtle)
           Family 83. Onagraceae
(evening primrose)
     Order 11. Umbelliflorae
           Family 84. Araliacae
(ginseng)
           Family 85. Umbelliferae
(parsley)
           Family 86. Cornaceae
(dogwood)
   Super Order 4. SYMPETALAE  (flowers with joined petals)
     Order 1. Ericales
           Family 87. Clethraceae
(white alder)
           Family 88. Pyrolaceae
(wintergreen)
           Family 89. Ericaceae
(blueberry)
           Family 90. Diapensiaceae
     Order 2. Primulales
           Family 91. Myrsinaceae ?
     Order 3. Plumbaginales
           Family 92. Plumbaginaceae ?
     Order 4. Ebenales
           Family 93. Sapotaceae
           Family 94. Ebenaceae
(persimmon)
           Family 95. Symplocaceae
(sweet-leaf)
           Family 96. Styracaceae
(snowbell)
     Order 5. Contortae
           Family 97. Oleaceae
(ash, lilac)
           Family 98. Loganiaceae
           Family 99. Apocynaceae
(dogbane)
           Family 100. Ascelpiadaceae (milkweed)
     Order 6. Tubiflorae
           Family 101. Polemoniaceae
(phlox)
           Family 102. Boraginaceae
(borage)
           Family 103. Verbenaceae
(vervain)
           Family 104. Labiatae
(mint)
           Family 105. Solanaceae
(nightshade)
           Family 106. Scrophulariaceae
(figwort)
           Family 107. Bignoniaceae
(catalpa)
           Family 108. Globulariaceaa ?
     Order 7. Plantaginales
           Family 109. Plantaginaceae
(plantain)
     Order 8. Rubiales
           Family 110. Rubiaceae
(madder)
           Family 111. Caprifoliaceae
(honeysuckle)
           Family 112. Dipsacaceae
(teasel)
     Order 9. Campanulatae
           Family 113. Compositae
(composites)

Subclass 2. MONOCTYLEDONAEA  (seeds with one "leave")
     Order 1. Glumflorae
            Family 114. Gramineae
(grasses)
     Order 2. Liliiflorae
            Family 115. Liliaceae
(lillies)

Source: Rehder, 1940. Manual of Cultivated Trees and Shrubs.
Cross-checked with Gleason & Cronquist (1963) and Harlow & Harrar (1968).


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This site created and maintained by Bill Cook, MSU Extension Forester for the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.   Editing and modification is ongoing.  Submit suggestions, questions, and corrections to cookwi@msu.edu or call 906-786-1575. 

 

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