Green Ash Tree: Leaves, Bark (Pictures) – Identification and Care Guide

The green ash tree (Fraxinus pennsylvanica) is a deciduous tree with big, glossy, dark green leaves and an irregular pyramidal crown that grows at a rapid pace. Green ash trees have diamond-patterned, tiny clusterings of spring blooms (panicles), and long winged fruit called samaras, which are similar to the seeds of maples.

One of the most prevalent ash trees is green ash, which is a native North American deciduous tree. The landscape tree thrives on most well-drained soils and can tolerate drought and flooding. Furthermore, this popular decorative tree is resistant to pests and diseases.

The green ash tree can be found in this article. Recognize this tree in a landscape by learning about green ash leaves, flowers, bark, and seeds. You’ll also learn how to grow this lovely tree, as well as other advice.

Green Ash Tree (Fraxinus pennsylvanica) Facts

Green ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica) is an ash tree that grows natively in North America and belongs to the Oleaceae family. The medium-sized landscape tree grows up to 50 feet (15 meters) tall and broad. The silvery-brown stem may be 24 inches (60 cm) in diameter.

The green ash tree, which produces tiny clusters of green and purple blooms, is a deciduous flowering tree. Dioecious means that male and female flowers develop on different ash trees. USDA zones 3 through 9 are perfect for green ash trees. Since they tolerate a wide range of growing conditions, they are the most commonly planted species of ash trees. Clay, waterlogged soils, and sandy, drought-prone soils in full sun are ideal conditions for green ash trees to thrive.

Much of central and eastern North America is home to green ash. It can be found on the east coast of the United States, from the Midwest and Great Plains to the east. In North Florida, along the Gulf coast, and east Texas, the green ash may be found growing in the panhandle. Red ash is another name for green ash trees. Nonetheless, due to their reddish-brown twigs and bark, young trees are more often referred to as red ash. Green ash is a common name for mature Fraxinus pennsylvanica species.

Fast-growing ornamental trees include green ash trees. The ash tree grows at a faster pace than other trees, reaching a height of 70 feet (21 m) by the age of 70 years.

Green Ash Tree Leaves

Green ash tree leaves are pinnately complex and feature five to nine large leaflets. The blades have finely serrated edges and a narrow apex, and they are lanceolate or ovate in shape. Green ash leaves, which grow on twigs in an opposing manner, are 3″ to 4″ (7.5 – 10 cm) long.

From spring to early autumn, green ash tree leaves are dark and glossy. In the autumn, before falling to the ground, the leaves acquire a beautiful golden yellow color.

In the autumn, green ash leaves

Green Ash Tree Bark

Green ash tree bark is grey-brown or ash-grey, with narrow crisscrossing ridges that create diamond-shaped designs. The silvery-brown bark has a rough look and an attractive appearance. In the winter, the tree’s detailed patterning and vibrant color add visual appeal. When young, green ash tree branches have a fuzzy look. The branches of the tree become smooth as it ages.

Due to their D-shaped or semi-circular leaf scars, green ash twigs are readily distinguished from other ash species. Leaf scars on twigs of the letter C are seen on the white ash tree (Fraxinus americana).

Green Ash Tree Flowers

Green ash flowers are light green to purple blooms that emerge in loose clusters and bloom early in the season. Petal-less, tubular blooms are generally less than 1″ (2.5 cm) in diameter and occur in small clusters. On separate trees, male and female flowers bloom.

Green Ash Tree Seeds

The samara is the green ash fruit, which contains a single seed. Immature green fruit (left) and ripe brown seeds (right) are seen in the photograph. When female trees stop producing flowers, the winged seeds develop in drooping clusters. The pendulous samaras (seed capsules) are up to 3 inches (7.5 cm) long. In the autumn, the ash tree fruit ripens, but it may remain on the tree until winter.

Only pollinated female green ash trees produce fruit, hence the long drooping samaras help to distinguish between female and male ash trees. Female ash trees, on the other hand, are a little more complicated. Plant a male green ash tree or a seedless cultivar to avoid clearing fallen fruit.

Green Ash Tree Identification

The grayish-brown bark with a distinctive diamond patterning distinguishes the green ash tree. Pinnately compound leaves up to 12″ (30 cm) long and five to nine large dark green ovate or lanceolate leaflets, small green-purplish flowers, and clusters of drooping winged samaras are all characteristics of the medium-sized tree.

Where to Plant Green Ash Tree

Plant a green ash tree on any type of fertile, moist, well-drained soil in the sunniest portion of your yard. Don’t place the ash tree next to buildings or other objects that might restrict it because of its size and scope. As a result, place the green ash 30 feet (10 meters) away from buildings or other trees.

How to Plant Green Ash Tree

In the autumn, when it’s dormant, plant a bare-root green ash tree. Dig a hole with the same depth as the root ball, twice as wide. Roots should be no deeper than 1 inch (2.5 cm) below the soil surface at the top of the roots. Backfill with native soil before setting the root ball in the hole.

Press the earth down around the root as you fill in the hole to remove air pockets from the planting site. Once the site has been thoroughly watered, place the green ash tree there. Lastly, to conserve moisture and weed suppress, apply a 3″ (7.5 cm) thick layer of mulch around the root region.

How to Grow Green Ash Tree From Seed

It’s fairly easy to grow a green ash tree from seed. The seeds of green ash, a fast-growing native shade tree, take some time to germinate. Collect the ash tree seeds, remove the winged casings, and dump them in a bucket of water in late summer or early fall. Throw away any that float.

The green ash seeds must be stratified in order to speed up germination. Put a handful of seeds in a sealable plastic bag, which is half-filled with moist peat moss. Next, for four weeks, put the seed bag in a warm environment. Then, for eight weeks in the refrigerator, put it.

Put individual seeds in small pots filled with damp peat moss for the next step to grow a green ash tree from seed. Put it in a warm, bright location with indirect sunlight, but not directly. Green ash seeds take up to 18 months to sprout, so remember that before you plant them.

You may move green ash seedlings to a bigger container and continue to develop them until they reach approximately 6 inches (15 cm) tall. After that, in a sunny area in your garden, you may put the rooted ash tree.

Green Ash Tree in the Landscape

A gorgeous shade tree for landscapes is a green ash tree. Even in winter, the upright ash tree with its oval to pyramidal form and lovely bark adds visual beauty. Moreover, as a street or shade tree, the ash tree has a large canopy and thick foliage.

Because they don’t make much of a mess, seedless green ash varieties are especially suited for urban settings. Furthermore, the green ash tree can grow practically anywhere due to its ability to adapt to city surroundings and soil compaction.

Green Ash Tree Care Guide

Because they are easy to care for and thrive under difficult circumstances, such as poor soil and drought, green ash trees are very popular. In order for a green ash tree to flourish and be resistant to pests and disease, there are a few things you should know.

How to Water Green Ash Tree

Watering should be reduced significantly in the winter if you water a green ash tree on a regular basis throughout the growing season. To hydrate the root system, water the ash tree every 10 to 14 days throughout the summer, up to a depth of 24 inches (60 cm). Water every three to four weeks in the spring and fall. Green ash only needs watering during the winter if there is no snow cover. If there hasn’t been any rain in the last six weeks, reduce watering frequency to every six weeks.

For a green ash tree’s health, it needs enough water. Although drought-tolerant, established ash trees are vulnerable to pests during severe drought. The emerald ash borer is the most prevalent insect, posing the greatest danger to the tree’s health.

Green Ash Tree Fertilization

Annual applications of compost or manure are beneficial to green ash trees, which thrive in rich, moist soil. Fertilize young green ash trees in June to encourage rapid development and good health. Unless the tree is stressed, mature green ash trees don’t need additional fertilizing.

Apply a slow-release fertilizer to a green ash tree in the early spring months if you decide to fertilize it. You can apply a 3-1-1 or 3-1-2 NPK balanced tree fertilizer to your trees. Slow growth, yellowing leaves, or dead branch tips are all indications that a green ash tree needs fertilization.

How to Prune Green Ash Tree

When a green ash tree is young and dormant during the winter, it is ideal to prune it. To create a central leader, you should remove the thinner of two neighboring limbs and trim them. Thin stems and improve air circulation through the leaves are also benefits.

A young green ash tree, on the other hand, will grow into an attractive decorative shade tree even if you don’t have time to trim it. Prune mature green ash trees in late winter or early spring to cut off dead, rotting, or diseased limbs. Branches rubbing together or arching back toward the tree are also signs of disease. Removing these branches helps your tree maintain healthy and pest-free, as well as preventing disease.

Around the main stem, green ash trees are more prone to generating suckers. To keep your tree healthy, you’ll need to trim them from June through August.

Green Ash Tree Propagation

The quickest way to grow a fresh tree is by propagating a green ash tree from cuttings. You should take a few 8″ (20 cm) twig cuttings of fresh, green wood in the summer. Save the few leaves near the tip and strip some of the bark from the incised end. Dip the severed end of a green ash cutting in rooting hormone to plant.

Then, in a pot of moist peat moss, put the twig a few inches deep in a warm, bright area. At least three nodes in the soil are ideal. To keep the soil moist, mist it every day.

Green ash root takes around eight weeks to develop. However, until new growth emerges, the cutting should continue to grow in the container. This might take a few months. The following season, usually, you may plant a green ash tree on the ground.

Pests Affecting Green Ash Tree

Emerald ash borers are the most common emerald ash borer pest that affects green ash trees. Sawflies, spider mites, leafcutter bees, and scale insects are some of the other insect species that harm a green ash tree.

Emerald ash borer (Agrilus planipennis) An invasive beetle that can kill an ash tree in three to five years is a non-native invader. The insect larvae feed on the tree’s nutrients, depleting it of moisture, and live in the bark. Millions of ash trees are killed annually by the larvae of this green beetle, according to estimates. A green ash tree might also be damaged by the lilac borer (Podosesia syringae).

Emerald ash borer activity may be detected by the following signs:

  • On the bark, vertical fissures
  • On the exposed inner bark, winding feeding trails may be seen.
  • The number of woodpecker calls has increased.
  • Adult beetles have emerged from D-shaped holes.

It’s best to contact professional arborists for advice if you suspect emerald ash borer activity.

Brown-headed ash sawfly (Tomostethus multicinctus) Green ash and other kinds of ash trees are both afflicted by this pest. The larvae that feed on ash leaves, skeletonizing them until there are almost no remaining leaves, are the tree-damaging insects. Even after the complete tree defoliation in the spring, new leaves will continue to emerge.

Leafcutting bees (Megachilidae) Pollinators are beneficial to the ecosystem. Their tiny larvae, on the other hand, devour green ash leaves, producing circular patches on their margins. The holes seem to have been punched out by a paper punch. They’re totally circular.

Diseases Affecting Green Ash Tree

If the green ash trees are stressed, fungal and bacterial diseases may affect them. Ash trees are typically resistant to disease when growing in full sun and getting enough water. Ash rust, anthracnose, and verticillium wilt can all affect the health of an ash tree.

Ash rust The fungus Puccinia fraxinata causes this fungal disease. Leaves, stems, and tiny twigs on a tree may swell and become twisted when it is diseased. Moreover, canker-like formations on the branches may cause leaves to appear brown in the summer. On the tree, you may see bright yellow or orange powdery spores.

Verticillium wilt Many shade trees, particularly green ash trees, are affected. The vascular system of deciduous trees is attacked by this soil fungus, which affects leaf growth. Tree leaves with symptoms of yellowing and wilting are symptoms of wilt. The crown might seem dried and withered in certain cases. Regular watering of the green ash tree should help it relax and recover. Pruning and destroying afflicted branches and foliage, on the other hand, is critical.

Anthracnose Green ash leaves develop brown or black irregular spots on the leaves as a result of foliar disease. From the leaf’s central vein, unsightly brown patches may spread out. However, ash trees are rarely killed by this fungal infection.

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