CT DR EcoR
Soil: Slightly acidic loam, Well-drained
Moisture: Average to Moist
Light: Full Sun to Shade
Plant Height: 25 to 40 feet
Plant Width: 15 to 40 feet
Pests: None except gypsy moths
Landscape Value: Great for woodland gardens and wooded edges. Good as a lawn specimen and, due to its smaller size, suitable as a patio, deck, or courtyard shade tree. Shaggy bark provides winter interest.
A slow-growing, medium-size deciduous tree with grayish-brown, flaky bark and drooping branches. Birch-like leaves are dark green above, turning golden-yellow in the fall. Flowers appear on separate male and female catkins. Pendulous male catkins occur in groups of three; shorter female catkins occur individually at the tips of branches. Pollinated female flowers produce flattened nutlets enclosed in overlapping, greenish-white, inflated sacs that later turn dull brown. Sac clusters resemble the fruiting clusters of hops used in making beer, hence one of the common names. Buds and nutlets attract songbirds, ground birds, and small mammals. Tolerates drought and a wide range of soil types, including alkaline, shallow-rocky, clay, and dry. Wood is extremely dense (hence another common name) and resistant to damage from wind, ice, and snow. Very sensitive to flooding and salt from ocean spray and winter roads. Predominantly an understory tree, but does well in sunny areas, where it develops a broader crown. Fertilizing is not recommended, except to correct soil nutrient deficiencies. Correct soil pH, if needed, by amending backfill soil.
2 gallon pot, 2-3 feet tall
www.minnesotawildflowers.info (photo by Peter M. Dziuk)
Native Plant Trust (photo by Arieh Tal)
Oregon State University, College of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Horticulture