American Elm


American Elm

Ulmus americana

Family: Ulmacae

Leaf Type: Deciduous

Mature Height: 18-24 m (60-80 ft)

Fall Color: Yellow

Native Range: American elms are common and are found across more than half of the United States.



American elms can be characterized by their distinctive, arching canopy. Leaves are green, alternate, and have double serrated margins between seven and 20 cm long. Flowers can self-pollinate and are small and purple-brown in color, while the fruits of this tree include a flat, small samara, a winged dry fruit like that on a maple tree, with a circular wing. We recommend not sampling the fruits & nuts of the trees and plants here at Adventure Science Center.


Fun Facts

● Before Dutch Elm Disease, American elm trees lived to be 200 years or older, but today, individual trees rarely survive beyond 30 years.
● American elm flowers are hermaphroditic, meaning they have both male and female parts, an adaptation that allows this tree to reproduce on its own.
● The iconic and picturesque Mall and Liberty Walk in New York City’s Central Park are lined with majestic American elm trees.

“If Trees Could Sing” is a project of The Nature Conservancy that highlights several recording artists and demonstrates the importance of trees. Check out what The Bohannons have to say about American elms. 
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