Ostrya virginiana

Common name: Ironwood

Native plant

Ironwood is one of few superb upland understory trees.  It has yellow fall color and leaves which persist through winter. Fruits look like hops, hence the other common name of “hop-hornbeam.” Many books say the tree grows slowly and transplants poorly. Humbug! Ironwood is the fifth fastest growing tree in our nursery. Only Catalpa, Birches, Aspen, and Alders grow faster. Transplants great up to 10 feet in height. I like to put low-branched trees in clusters and use them as screens. I also have a low-branched single specimen in full sun in my yard that is exquisite. An excellent addition to any landscape.


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Plant Details

Plant type


Soil type

Dry, Dry Mesic, Mesic (Not too Wet Not too Dry)

Light exposure

Full Sun, Partial Sun / Part Shade, Shade

Bloom period


Urban environment

Compacted/New Construction Soils, Road-side/Salt Tolerant, Yards that Flood


Floodplain, Sandy Soils, Savannas, Woodlands

Growth form

Shrubby/Clump, Single trunk

Growth rate


Flower color

Yellowish Catkin

Fall color



Mature height
42 Feet
Mature width
20 Feet
Max height
45 Feet
Max width
30 Feet

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Available Online:  10
Price:  $25.00


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