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Ulmus alata (Winged Elm)

Winged Elm, Wahoo Elm, Cork Elm, Witch Elm

Ulmus alata, American Elm, American Water Elm,  Water Elm, White Elm, Tree with fall color, Fall color, Attractive bark Tree
Ulmus alata, American Elm, American Water Elm,  Water Elm, White Elm, Tree with fall color, Fall color, Attractive bark Tree
Ulmus alata, American Elm, American Water Elm,  Water Elm, White Elm, Tree with fall color, Fall color, Attractive bark Tree
Ulmus alata, American Elm, American Water Elm,  Water Elm, White Elm, Tree with fall color, Fall color, Attractive bark Tree

Ulmus alata (Winged Elm) is a small to medium-sized deciduous tree with a relatively short trunk and an open-rounded canopy. The bark is gray-brown with flat ridges separated by irregular fissures. The alternate, ovate, doubly serrate, dark green leaves are quite small, 2.5 in. long (6 cm). The foliage turns a dull yellow in the fall. The twigs and small limbs of Winged Elm often have corky ridges extending down either side. Inconspicuous brownish-green catkins appear in spring before the leaves emerge. They give way to single-seeded, flat, disk-like, reddish brown samaras. Native to eastern and central North America, Winged Elm occurs in dry woodlands, in rocky woods, on rock outcrops, along fence rows, and in hardwood or mixed hardwood/pine forests. A fast grower, Winged Elm is occasionally planted as a shade or street tree. Like other elms, Winged Elm has some vulnerability to the Dutch Elm disease but appears more resistant than American Elm (Ulmus americana).

  • Grows up to 30-50 ft. tall (9-15 m) and 20-40 ft. wide (6-12 m).
  • Performs best in full sun (tolerates light shade) in rich, moist to dry, well-drained loams. Tolerant of poor soils, drought and urban conditions.
  • Good as a specimen plantlandscape tree, shade tree or street tree.
  • Keep an eye out for Dutch elm disease, phloem necrosis, powdery mildew, wetwood. Various wilts, rots, cankers and leaf spots may also occur
  • Regular pruning of young trees is usually required in order to eliminate multiple trunks.
  • Propagated by fresh, untreated seeds or softwood cuttings.
  • Native to eastern and central North America.

Requirements

Hardiness 6 - 9
Plant Type Trees
Plant Family Ulmaceae
Genus Ulmus
Common names Winged Elm
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid, Late)
Summer (Early, Mid, Late)
Fall
Height 30' - 50'
(9.1m - 15.2m)
Spread 20' - 40'
(6.1m - 12.2m)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Low, Average
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy
Native Plants United States, Northeast, Maryland, Kansas, Indiana, Midwest, Missouri, Illinois, Southeast, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Southwest, Texas, Oklahoma
Tolerance Drought, Dry Soil
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Styles Prairie and Meadow
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Alternative Plants to Consider

Ulmus americana (American Elm)
Ulmus parvifolia ‘Seiju’ (Chinese Elm)
Ulmus parvifolia ‘Frosty’ (Chinese Elm)
Ulmus glabra ‘Lutescens’ (Golden Elm)
Ulmus glabra ‘Camperdownii’ (Scotch Elm)
Ulmus pumila (Siberian Elm)

Recommended Companion Plants

Tilia americana (American Basswood)
Carya glabra (Pignut Hickory)
Ilex opaca (American Holly)
Hamamelis virginiana (Virginian Witch Hazel)
Rhapidophyllum hystrix (Needle Palm)
Sabal minor (Dwarf Palmetto)
Lonicera sempervirens (Trumpet Honeysuckle)
Liquidambar styraciflua (Sweet Gum)

Find In One of Our Guides or Gardens

Roots of Life: Exploring the Diverse World of Trees
Spectacular Trees for Vibrant Fall Colors: A Gardener’s Guide
Native Plant Alternatives to Ulmus pumila (Siberian Elm)
Native Plant Alternatives to Ulmus parvifolia (Chinese Elm)
While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.
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Requirements

Hardiness 6 - 9
Plant Type Trees
Plant Family Ulmaceae
Genus Ulmus
Common names Winged Elm
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid, Late)
Summer (Early, Mid, Late)
Fall
Height 30' - 50'
(9.1m - 15.2m)
Spread 20' - 40'
(6.1m - 12.2m)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Low, Average
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy
Native Plants United States, Northeast, Maryland, Kansas, Indiana, Midwest, Missouri, Illinois, Southeast, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Southwest, Texas, Oklahoma
Tolerance Drought, Dry Soil
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Styles Prairie and Meadow
How Many Plants
Do I Need?
Guides with
Ulmus (Elm)
Not sure which Ulmus (Elm) to pick?
Compare Now

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