Shagbark Hickory Carya ovata
Family: Juglandaceae (Walnut)
Branching: Alternate

When mature, the thick peeling plates of Shagbark and Shellbark Hickories are very distinctive.  Hickory bark as a group looks similar when young.  There are several species but most do not occur in Ontario.  Bitternut and Shagbark are the two most common, and even they are only found in extreme southern Ontario.  Those two can be distinguished quite easily by buds or mature bark.  Hickory leaf scars all look quite similar and resemble many other species, Walnuts in particular.

Shagbark end bud

Lateral bud and leaf scar

Young Shagbark Hickory bark

Middle aged bark as it begins to split and peel

Mature bark

Another view of mature tree (same tree).
Often the trees are much more shaggy than this

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copyright 2008 Josh Sayers
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