Chionanthus virginicus L. - White Fringetree


 

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Chionanthus virginicus - (image 1 of 6)

 

Taxonomy

Family: Oleaceae

Habitat

Rich woods and along streams.

Associates

 

Distribution

NJ to FL, west irregularly to southern OH, southern MO, eastern OK, and eastern TX.

Morphology

Functionally dioicious shrub or small tree to 10 m; leaves alternate, lance-elliptic to oblong or obovate, 8-15 cm; panicles many-flowered, drooping, 10-20 cm, corolla white, the lobes 15-30 mm; fruit a dark blue drupe, 10-15 mm.

Notes

Flowers May

Wetland indicator: FAC

Hardy north of its natural range and sometimes cultivated. Male plants have larger and showier flowers. The only member of this genus in North America, though a dwarf subspecies endemic to Florida is sometimes treated as a distinct species (C. pygmaeus); two other species occur in Asia. One of these, Chinese fringetree (Chionanthus retusus) is pictured below.

References

Gleason, Henry A. and A. Cronquist. 1991. Manual of Vascular Plants of Northeastern United States and Adjacent Canada. Second Ed.
The New York Botanical Garden. Bronx, NY

 


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Michael Hough 2018