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Plant Families / Carya - Hickories


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Carya - Hickories

Carya (Hickory) is a genus of 18 species distributed in North America, Mexico, and eastern Asia. They are vigorous deciduous trees of beautiful appearance. Their large, often lustrous, dark olive-green, pinnate leaves turn brilliant golden yellow in fall on many species. The trees provide seasonal interest, and several species produce sweet, edible nuts that drop from late summer into autumn. Long-lived, slow-growing, they are known for being good shade trees.

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Carya illinoinensis (Hardy Pecan)

Carya illinoinensis (Hardy Pecan) is a tall and massive deciduous tree with a large spreading crown boasting lustrous dark olive-green leaves, each leaf having 11-17 pointed leaflets, 4 to 7 in. long (10-17cm). They turn yellow brown in the fall. Inconspicuous greenish yellow flowers appear in spring, the male flowers in pendulous catkins and the female flowers in short spikes.

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Carya ovata (Shagbark Hickory)

Carya ovata (Shagbark Hickory) is a tall deciduous tree of broadly conical habit with an irregular, oval-rounded crown and a stunning straight gray trunk that peels in large, shaggy strips. The ascending and descending branches are clothed in dark olive-green leaves, each leaf having 5 pointed leaflets, 3 to 7 in. long (7-17cm). They turn rich yellow and golden brown in the fall.

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