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American Hazelnut Corylus americana

Other Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
kor-EE-lus a-mer-ih-KAY-na
Description

Hazelnut is a deciduous shrub that may grow 9 to 12 feet tall. It can be found naturally in rocky woodlands, forests, and thickets. The leaves are alternate with a double-toothed margin and hairy stem. The bark is gray-brown and smooth with a criss-cross netted pattern. Light brown, male flowers and red, female stigma and styles mature in early spring. The shrub produces a 1/2-inch brown nut that is enclosed in a hairy, leaf-like husk with ragged edges. Nuts are edible at maturity in the fall.

Seasons of Interest: 

  Leaf:  Fall                   Blooms:  Winter/early spring            Nut/Fruit/Seed:  Late summer/fall

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems: No serious insect or disease problems:  Can be visited by scale, leafhoppers and various foliage-eating caterpillars. Has occasional problems with leaf spots, blight, and crown gall.  This plant suffers damage from deer

Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#showy flowers#birds#songbirds#full sun#partial shade#shrub#wildlife plant#deciduous shrub#native shrub#low maintenance#edible nuts#small mammals#food source#low flammability#NC native#small and large mammals#quail#part shade#fire resistant#woodland#edible fruits#background#Braham Arboretum#turkey#naturalized area#food source summer#native#food source fall#Coastal FACU#food source hard mast fruit#food source herbage#Piedmont Mountains FACU
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#showy flowers#birds#songbirds#full sun#partial shade#shrub#wildlife plant#deciduous shrub#native shrub#low maintenance#edible nuts#small mammals#food source#low flammability#NC native#small and large mammals#quail#part shade#fire resistant#woodland#edible fruits#background#Braham Arboretum#turkey#naturalized area#food source summer#native#food source fall#Coastal FACU#food source hard mast fruit#food source herbage#Piedmont Mountains FACU
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Corylus
    Species:
    americana
    Family:
    Betulaceae
    Uses (Ethnobotany):
    Nuts are similar in flavor to the European filbert, and may be roasted and eaten or ground into flour, but are also commonly left for the squirrels and birds.
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    United State and Canada
    Distribution:
    Eastern and Mid United States into Canada
    Fire Risk Rating:
    low flammability
    Wildlife Value:
    The nuts are eaten by songbirds, ruffed grouse, quail, wild turkeys, chipmunks, black bears, foxes, white-tailed deer, skunks, and squirrels.  The twigs and leaves are browsed by white-tailed deer.
    Play Value:
    Edible fruit
    Screening
    Wildlife Cover/Habitat
    Wildlife Food Source
    Particularly Resistant To (Insects/Diseases/Other Problems):
    fire in the landscape.
    Edibility:
    Nuts are edible
    Dimensions:
    Height: 9 ft. 0 in. - 12 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 8 ft. 0 in. - 13 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Edible
    Native Plant
    Shrub
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Clumping
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Low
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Deep shade (Less than 2 hours to no direct sunlight)
    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
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Occasionally Dry
    Available Space To Plant:
    12-24 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    Usda Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Fruit Value To Gardener:
    Edible
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Summer
    Fruit Type:
    Nut
    Fruit Length:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Width:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Description:
    Female flowers develop into a small cluster of nuts enclosed by two protective bracts that turn brown when the nuts are ripe. Nuts are 1/2 inch in size. Display time is late summer and fall.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Red/Burgundy
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Catkin
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Winter
    Flower Size:
    1-3 inches
    Flower Description:
    There are separate male and female flowers on the same plant. Several female flowers bloom together from a small swollen bud that is surrounded by protective bracts with only the red stigmata showing beyond the bracts. The male flowers are showier in 2-4 inch long yellow to yellow-brown catkins. Bloom time is winter and early spring.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Deciduous Leaf Fall Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Orange
    Red/Burgundy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Ovate
    Leaf Margin:
    Doubly Serrate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    3-6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Up to 6 inches long by 4 inches wide oval leaves are dark green with doubly serrated margins. The lower surface has stiff short hairs. Fall color is variable and can be an attractive yellow-red to purple or a dull yellow-green.
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Light Brown
    Light Gray
    Surface/Attachment:
    Smooth
    Bark Description:
    The bark is gray and smooth on young branches, becoming rougher on older branches and the trunk.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Surface:
    Hairy (pubescent)
    Stem Description:
    Light green stems with short hairs
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Naturalized Area
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Edible Garden
    Native Garden
    Design Feature:
    Barrier
    Hedge
    Mass Planting
    Screen/Privacy
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Small Mammals
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Fire