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Leaf Shape

The shape of the leaf is very important in helping identify a particular tree. We can describe the overall shape (outline) and the shape of the leaf tips and bases. Continue to Leaf Margins >>>
 

Willows have long and slender "lanceolate" leaves. Water oak leaves are "spatulate", with slender bases and very broad tips. Redbud leaves are heart-shaped or "cordate". Maples are round in outline or "orbicular".
Zelkova leaves are ovate, egg-shaped and broadest near the base. Spicebush leaves are elliptical. An ellipse is symmetrical. The leaflets of buckeye leaves are obovate, egg-shaped and broadest near the tip. Chinese chestnut leaves are oblong. They have an elongated oval shape.

 

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