All Common Names:
Tree or Plant Type:
- Deciduous (seasonally loses leaves)
- Chicago area,
- North America
- Large tree (more than 40 feet)
- Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily),
- Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)
- Zone 3,
- Zone 4,
- Zone 5 (Chicago),
- Zone 6,
- Zone 7
- Alkaline soil,
- Moist, well-drained soil
- Dry sites,
- Wet sites,
- Alkaline soil
- Excessive sucker growth
- Fall color,
- Edible fruit
Season of Interest:
- Early fall
Flower Color & Fragrance:
Shape or Form:
- Insect pollinators,
- Small mammals
Tree & Plant Care
This species prefers rich, moist soils but can also tolerate drier sites. Produces a chemical, juglone, which is toxic to many plants.
Difficult to transplant due a deep taproot.
Disease, pests, and problems
Butternut canker is a serious problem of butternut, limiting its usefulness as a landscape tree.
Native geographic location and habitat
Bark color and texture
The light gray bark is relatively smooth, becoming slightly ridged and furrowed wth age.
Leaf or needle arrangement, size, shape, and texture
Alternate, pinnately compound leaves; leaf is 1 to 2 feet long; leaflets toothed; aromatic when crushed.
Leaves are green in summer, changing to yellow in fall.
Flower arrangement, shape, and size
Inconspicuous; male flowers in drooping clusters; female flowers in terminal spikes.
Fruit, cone, nut, and seed descriptions
Fruit is an oval husk, up to 2 inches in diameter, containing an edible nut.