Boone County Arboretum
9190 Camp Ernst Road
Union, Kentucky 41091
Phone: (859) 384-4999
Fax: (859) 384-6888

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Cultural Details for Carya ovata

Common Name:
Shagbark Hickory

Growth Rate:
Slow, about 6" per year.

Average Mature Height:

Average Mature Width:

Flower Details:
yellow-green pendulous catkins, 3-4" long; mid-May.

Fruit Details:
Globular nut encased by a thick 4 sectioned husk. Seed is edible and quite sweet. Early September-mid October.

Fall Color:
Rich yellow or golden brown.

Bark Details:
Gray to brown and breaks up in thin plates which are free at the end and attached at the middle

Disease / Insect Problems or Resistance:
None serious.

Native Habitat:
Cultivated in 1629. Native from Quebec to Minnesota, south to Georgia and Texas.

Other Features:
When leaves are bruised or crushed they have the faint aroma of apples.

Culture and Care:
Deep taproot makes transplanting a challenge. Adaptable to wide range of soils. Best in rich, well-drained loams. Not flood tolerant.

This plant was blooming:

Plantings of this cultivar at Boone County Arboretum:
273, 1168, 2175, 2328, 2550, 8603, 8609, 8619, 8622

    The information on this page may have come from one or more of the following sources:
  • Dirr, Michael. Manual of Woody Landscape Plants. Stipes Publishing. 1998.
  • Hightshoe, Gary L. Native Trees, Shrubs, and Vines for Urban and Rural America. John Wiley & Sons. 1988.
  • North Carolina Extension Plant Fact Sheets.
  • University of Connecticut Plant Database.