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Bitternut Carya cordiformis

Other Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
KAIR-yuh kord-ih-FOR-miss
Description

Native; has striking yellow buds

This plant is shade intolerant-intermediate.

Form: Irregular, cylindrical crown; stiff, ascending branches

 

Site: Sun to partial shade; range of soil types

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#deciduous#moths#NC native#nighttime garden#pollinator plant#Braham Arboretum#larval host plant#food source fall#food source herbage#coastal FAC#bird friendly#food source hard mast fruit#mammals#butterfly friendly#moth larvae#Piedmont Mountains FACU#non-toxic for horses#non-toxic for dogs#non-toxic for cats#audubon
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#deciduous#moths#NC native#nighttime garden#pollinator plant#Braham Arboretum#larval host plant#food source fall#food source herbage#coastal FAC#bird friendly#food source hard mast fruit#mammals#butterfly friendly#moth larvae#Piedmont Mountains FACU#non-toxic for horses#non-toxic for dogs#non-toxic for cats#audubon
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Carya
    Species:
    cordiformis
    Family:
    Juglandaceae
    Uses (Ethnobotany):
    Used to smoke ham and bacon
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Eastern Canada to Central & Eastern U.S.A
    Distribution:
    Northeast Canada west to NE, south to TX and east to FL
    Wildlife Value:
    Larval host for butterflies and Luna moths.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 50 ft. 0 in. - 70 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 25 ft. 0 in. - 40 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Native Plant
    Tree
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Ascending
    Irregular
    Growth Rate:
    Rapid
    Texture:
    Coarse
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    High Organic Matter
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Shallow Rocky
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Occasionally Wet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4a, 4b, 5b, 5a, 6b, 6a, 7b, 7a, 8a, 8b, 9b, 9a
  • Fruit:
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Fruit Type:
    Nut
    Fruit Description:
    Bitter nuts display in October
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Green
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Catkin
    Spike
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Description:
    3-4 drooping catkin in male flowers with 3 hanging from 1 stalk, short 4-angled terminal spike female flowers. Blooms from April to May
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Type:
    Compound (Pinnately , Bipinnately, Palmately)
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Lanceolate
    Leaf Margin:
    Serrate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Description:
    6-10 in. alternate, pinnately compound leaves with 5-9 leaflets
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Light Gray
    Surface/Attachment:
    Furrowed
    Smooth
    Bark Description:
    Thin tight and hard bark initially smooth and grey with shallow furrows with age
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Nighttime Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Moths
    Pollinators
    Small Mammals
    Songbirds