Black Ash
Leaf Characteristics
  • broad, flat
  • compound
  • pinnately compound
  • margins toothed
  • leaflets similar in size and shape
  • leaves opposite
  • leaflets without stems
Black Ash
Fruit Characteristics
  • single winged
  • elongated
  • truely winged
  • seed cavity rounded or flat
  • fruit straight
  • oblong, wider
Black Ash
Fraxinus nigra

The Black Ash has a tall trunk with a fairly uniform diameter up to the branches. The soft, ash-gray bark is fissured into scaly plates, which easily can be reduced to powder by rubbing. The Black Ash is a tree of wet places. It favors the wet soils of cold swamps, peat bogs, and stream bottoms that periodically are flooded. This is a northern tree, the most northern of the ash trees. It grows in much of southeastern Canada, the Great Lakes Region, and the northeastern-most states. In Ohio most records are from the northern half of the state, although a few local records occur in the southern counties. The wood of the Black Ash is soft but durable and it separates easily into thin layers. Strips of split wood are used in making baskets, barrel hoops and chair bottoms. This has given rise to alternate common names of "Basket Ash" and "Hoop Ash." Carpenters also sometimes use the wood for interior finish.

Tree Size height 30' - 60' diameter 1' - 2' Bark Twig