Carya ovata

Common name: Shagbark Hickory

Native plant

One of the best tasting nuts around, that is, if you can find it and then beat the gauntlet of squirrels to get it. The longer we have grown this plant and observe it in the wild the more we believe that it requires a fair amount of shade early in its development. In fact, we have noticed that plants in the field grow twice as fast when they have a weed tree growing in the same root bag! Without the shade this is a very slow growing plant. Even with it, it only grows at a clip of 6” to 8” per year. The shaggy bark takes years to develop, and how many years is a matter for debate. Does well in full sun on mesic to dry soil. Fall color is a clear and sometimes loud yellow.

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Plant Details

Plant type

Tree

Soil type

Dry Mesic, Mesic (Not to Wet Not to Dry), Moist Mesic

Light exposure

Full Sun, Partial Sun / Part Shade

Bloom period

Spring

Urban environment

Uncompacted Urban Soils, Requires Protected Site

Habitat

Prairie Grasslands, Woodlands

Growth form

Single trunk

Growth rate

Slow

Flower color

Catkin

Fall color

Yellow

Size

Mature height
40 Feet
Mature width
30 Feet
Max height
70 Feet
Max width
50 Feet

Additional information

Butterfly host plant Great Shade Tree Loved by birds Edible fruit

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