Virginia Kendall is a specific park area located within Cuyahoga Valley National Park in Peninsula, Ohio. The portion of the park that is the main focus is the area with many rock formations or “ledges.” This geography fits the sandstone foundation that is found across eastern Ohio and contains many valleys and steep hills. There are lush forested areas with some streams, as well as a field surrounded by the forested area. Within the park is a wide variety of plant life ranging from large deciduous trees, to the smallest mosses.

This cropped image of a map shows the general area of the park. It has multiple access points from two different roads (one in the north and another seen in the south).

Above are just some basic pictures showing some of the geography of the area in addition to how lush the forested area can be.

I am now going to show some of the initial plants found in this area.

Tulip Tree (Liriodendron tulipifera)

Believe it or not, when boiled in water, the bark of the Tulip Tree poplar could actually serve a medicinal purpose to treat typhoid and malaria as a sort of tea. This bark, when boiled down, could also serve as a type of cough syrup.

https://owlcation.com/stem/Tulip-Poplar-Tree-Facts-Uses-and-Planting-Tips

Black Ash (Fraxinus nigra)

The wood of Black Ash is good for craft purposes. Specifically, and due to it being strongly ring-porous, it is used a lot in basketry and other activities that involve weaving. The wood can also be used for canoe ribs and snowshoe frames.

https://plants.usda.gov/plantguide/pdf/cs_frni.pdf

Amur Honeysuckle (Lonicera maackii)

This type of honeysuckle is actually an invasive species that is native to Asia (in parts of China and Russia). Unfortunately, this honeysuckle is known to crowd out other plants and shade those plants preventing access to sunlight necessary to growth.

Amur honeysuckle (Lonicera maackii)

Multiflora Rose (Rosa multiflora)

Mayapple (Podophyllum peltatum)

The rhizome and fruit of the Mayapple was previously used for medicinal purpose by indigenous groups. Now, an extract from Mayapple can be used to remove warts.

https://vnps.org/princewilliamwildflowersociety/botanizing-with-marion/mayapple-plant-profile/

Early Buttercup (Ranunculus fascicularis)

This is the requested and infamous Poison Ivy (Rhus radicans). The leaves of Poison Ivy come in sets of three, and as seen here, have notches at times. Those notches and the number three are very important when it comes to avoiding the itchy rash that may occur after coming in contact with poison ivy.

 

Coefficient of Conservatism (CC) Investigation at Virginia Kendall 

High CC Plants and their CC:

White Oak (Quercus alba): 6

American Beech (Fagus grandifolia): 7

Skunk Cabbage (Symplocarpus foetidus): 6

Sycamore (Platanus occidentalis): 7

 

Low CC Plants and their CC

Common Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale): 0

Sassafras (Sassafras albidum): 3

Red Maple (Acer rubrum): 2

Sugar Maple (Acer saccharum): 5

 

Floristic Quality Assessment Index (FQAI) Value: 2.12+2.47+2.12+2.47+0+1.06+0.71+1.77= 12.72

(not sure if I interpreted the equation correctly, but I tried)

 

Interpretive Sign

So I encountered one glaring issue as I began to complete this assignment. That issue was a huge thunderstorm. I heard the thunder approaching as it began to sprinkle and quickly had to may my way out of the park so in order to not be drenched by the rain (or electrocuted by lightening). Because of that, I was only able to find and take a picture of one sign and all of my pictures for the sign had poor lighting.

This sign, similar to what I will be discussing in mine, addresses the geology of the area as it is the most striking aspect of the park. This sign, as I am sure with the others that are present in the park, follow the brown color scheme of the National Park Service. Even though I did not have a chance to see the other signs, this sign did have an eye-catching graphic and the content was easily understood.

In addition to drawing some inspiration from the sign I observed, I visited the Cuyahoga Valley National Park’s website to obtain a few more pieces of information. I attempted to add a bit more detail to my sign, along with some more general background information regarding rock types Furthermore, I added two examples of plants that are actually able to make their way onto the rock face and sustain life there.