Winged Elm

Ulmus alata

(Tree)

 

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Profile for the Winged Elm

Type of Plant: Medium-sized deciduous native tree with a rounded crown and spreading branches.  Grows to about 60 feet in height with a 30-60 foot spread.  Tough and drought-resistant.
Habitat: Floodplains, bluffs, slopes, and well-drained upland woodlands, dry to moist.
Distribution: Northwestern Florida to just west of the Atlantic coastal zone and south to about Lake, Orange and Pasco counties in central Florida. Zones 6-9a.
Landscape Use: Winged Elm is an excellent medium-sized specimen, shade, or street tree. The delicate texture of the foliage and the characteristic corky wings along its twigs and branches make it an attractive alternative to many coarser shade trees. Provides seasonal interest with the deciduous foliage turning yellow in the fall and then, in winter, the twisting, winged branches take center stage for a very architectural effect.
Wildlife Benefit: Provides cover for birds and other wildlife and is especially attractive to nesting birds. The early seeds provide food to birds and squirrels. Also larval host plant for butterflies such as the Queen Mark, Snout, Hackberry, and the Tawny Emperor.
Soil: Adaptable to many soil types, pH 5.0 to 7.0. Prefers well drained, dry to mesic (moist) soils. Sandy to clay loam.
Light: Full sun to partial shade.
Water: Dry to moist. Drought tolerant once established.
Misc: Extremely tolerant of hot weather, but some specimens prone to powdery mildew which turns the foliage almost white late in the growing season. Select a mildew-resistant form. Not salt tolerant.

 

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