odd plant in woodlands near Gaithersburg?
HI, I recently ran across this (see attached photo) single stemmed, budded plant in the state woodlands, that in all my years of hiking, I have never seen before. The stem has 4 very tough, brown vanes that run longitudinal on the stem (they look like very long vanes/fletching on an arrow). The vanes are notched at regular intervals, 90 degrees apart, and two of them end in buds (sorry for the blurry bud picture - I only had my phone with me while dogs were pulling me down the path). Could you help me identify what this plant is? It has been many years since I have found a plant I couldn't identify, so this is a welcome challenge.
This looks like Winged Euonymus (Euonymus alatus), which is non-native and has become invasive in natural areas. It is also called Burning Bush. Compare it to the photos provided by the Maryland Biodiversity Project: https://www.marylandbiodiversity.com/viewSpecies.php?species=2219