Volunteer Locust Seedling - Black or Honey? August 2021
I was doing some weeding in one of our backyard beds, and came across this small tree seedling that you can see in the photo below. It is about 10" tall and has oval, pinnate leaves. Looking around at my neighbor's yard, I know they have locust trees. A bunch of them. They flower in Spring and have lots of leaves on them. But, I'm not sure if they're Black or Honey locusts.
Both are native to Illinois, but the Black Locust - sometimes called "Chicago Blues" is now considered invasive (The Morton Arboretum has it listed as "not recommended").
One other key trait of the Black Locust trees are they they carry thorns - especially when young. Right now, this little seedling has no thorns, so I'm going to leave it alone. If I see thorns develop, I'll lop this one off and remove it.