The tree grows in rich, moist, well-drained soil. It is found throughout glaciated Ohio, in the western, northwestern and northern parts of the state. The tough, fibrous inner bark has been used by Native American Indians and settlers in making rope, mats, and thongs. The wood is light and soft, and is well suited for working. Although rather weak, it has been used for cheap furniture, containers, beekeeping supplies, and various woodenware. Honeybees feed on the flowers, producing what is reputed to be a choice grade of honey. Birds eat the buds, small mammals eat the fruit, and several species feed on the bark and sprouts.