- Common Name(s):
- Shagbark hickory
- Native Plants, Trees
The Shagbark Hickory is a deciduous tree that may grow 70 to 80 feet tall. The bark on young trees is scaly. As the tree ages, narrow, flat plates 1 foot to 3 foot long develop and begin to separate and curve away from the trunk, giving it a shaggy appearance. The trunk may mature to 2-3 foot in diameter.
Hickory wood is often used to cure or smoke meats. It is also an excellent firewood/fuel. The wood is extremely hard and is used to make a variety of products including tool handles, ladders, gun stocks and furniture.
Regions: Mountain, Piedmont, Coastal plains
Seasons of Interest:
Leaves: Fall Bloom: Spring Fruit/Seed/Nut: Fall
Wildlife Value: The Shagbark hickory is a host plant for Banded Hairstreak butterfly and many moths. The nuts are eaten by a variety of wildlife such as squirrels, chipmunks, and black bears. It is also moderately resistant to damage done by deer.
Insects, Diseases, or Other Plant Problems: Although this tree has no serious insect or disease problems, the hickory bark beetle, pecan weevil, and twig girdler can be a problem. Trees as large as the Shagbark hickory can produce considerable litter through twig, leaf, and fruit (nut) droppings.
- 70-90 ft.
- Non-showy, monoecious greenish-yellow flowers appear on the Shagbark hickory in April to May, the male flowers in pendulous catkins (3 to 5 " long) and the female flowers in short spikes. Female flowers give way to edible oval-rounded nuts. Each nut is encased in a moderately thick husk which splits open into four sections when ripe in the fall.
- The Shagbark hickory is best grown in humusy, rich, moist, well-drained loams in full sun to part shade. This tree needs a very large space to grow. It is difficult to transplant due to its deep taproot. Cross-pollination generally produces a more abundant crop of better quality nuts.
- Medium to coarse
- Narrow, upright, irregular habit; open branch habit; straight trunk; oblong crown of ascending branches
- Sun to partial shade
- 30-40 ft.
- Growth Rate:
- The leaf of the Shagbark hickory is a smooth, alternate, medium yellow-green, odd-pinnate, compound leaf, each having 5 finely-toothed, broadly lance-shaped, pointed leaflets. Leaflets range from 3-7" long. They turn yellow to golden brown in the fall.
NCCES plant id: 1938