White Ash Fraxinus americana
Family: Oleaceae (Olive)
fairly common tree, in drier,
more upland sites. Looks, in many respects, similar to other
Ashes (especially Green). The leaf scar is often deeply indented
by the bud that sits above it.
With the other Ashes, the bud just barely touches the leaf scar
beneath it; though of course, this is variable. The twigs of
White Ash tend to be somewhat shiny (especially near the tips), whereas
the other Ashes tend to have dull twigs. White Ash bark, on
mature trees, is very diagnostic
and can be identified from far away. It has a very regular,
symmetrical pattern of interlocking fissures that give a diamond-like
appearance. Green/Red Ash can look similar, but the effect is not
as pronounced. Another helpful feature is the space between the
end bud and the lateral buds beneath it. On a White Ash (as well
as Red and Green) the lateral buds are directly beneath the terminal
bud, and are actually touching it. There is usually a small space
between the end bud and the lateral buds of a Black Ash.
White Ash twig, showing the indented leaf scar. Often, the leaf scar is so indented that it looks like a smile.
Another view of a very indented leaf scar.
Another view of a White Ash twig
Another winter twig of White Ash
Ash flowers are often afflicted by a gall-making insect which causes them to be retained over the winter
White Ash bark. Very regular pattern to it; obvious from far away.
A mature ash, with another one behind and to the left
Back to the
© 2008 Josh Sayers
please email me with any questions, comments, or errors