All photographs are copyrighted and are the property of E. Brunner.
Native or Introduced to Illinois: native
Natural Habit in Illinois: Found in open wooded bluffs and rocky woods.
Leaf: Alternate, 4 to 7 inches long, 2 to 3 inches wide, margin coarsely and sharply doubly serrated, base of leaf conspicuously inequilateral; upper surface very scabrous, slightly scabrous or hairy beneath.
Flower: Appears March to May before leaves open.
Fruit: Appears May to June, 3/4 to 1 inch across, margin and surface of wing smooth; surface of seed cavity pubescent.
Twig: Often stouter than American elm, slightly zigzag; ashy gray to brownish gray, often scabrous; lateral buds dark, chestnut brown to nearly black; buds may be rusty-hairy, twigs mucilaginous when chewed.
Bark: Dark reddish-brown, does not show buff-colored patches or streaks when sectioned; bark fissures not as diamond-shaped as American elm; inner bark mucilaginous.
Size/Form/Shape: This graceful, arching tree reaches 20 m, with twigs that are scabrous-pubescent. It can live to be 200 years old and is identified by its "slippery" inner bark.
Birds often nest in the thick elm foliage,
and the seeds and buds are food to songbirds, game birds, and squirrels.
Deer and rabbits browse on the twigs.
County Distribution Map for Illinois:
Sources for the Sullivan Middle School Tree Identification Guide were obtained though the use of the following sites:
- Illinois Plant Information Network (ILPIN) @ http://www.fs.fed.us/ne/delaware/ilpin/ilpin.html#Background
- List of Woody Plants Native or Naturalized in Illinois @ http://www.inhs.uiuc.edu/~kenr/woody.html
- Tree Species @ http://ostermiller.org/tree/species.html
- Index to Eastern/Central Trees @ http://www.arborday.org/trees/ECtreelist.html
- ISU Forestry Extension Identification of Common Trees of Iowa @ http://www.extension.iastate.edu/Pages/tree/
- Key to Leaves of Virginia Trees @ http://www.fw.vt.edu/dendro/forsite/key/intro.htm
- List of Native Trees for Use Along Roadsides in Illinois @ http://www.inhs.uiuc.edu/~kenr/treetable.html
- The PLANTS Database @ http://plants.usda.gov/