Carpinus caroliniana
Common name: 
American Hornbeam
kar-PI-nus ka-ro-lin-i-A-na
Native to (or naturalized in) Oregon: 
  • Deciduous tree, 20-30 ft (6-9 m), often multi-stemmed, wide spreading, at maturity flat or round-topped.  Leaves alternate, simple, ovate-oblong, 6-13 cm long, acuminate, sharply and doubly serrate, dark green in summer, yellowish, orange, to red in fall.  Male and female flowers in separate clusters (catkins) on the same tree.  Female flowers have conspicuous 3-lobed leaf-like bracts.   Fruit is a small ribbed nutlet, enclosed by 3-lobed bract, borne in pairs.
  • Sun to shade, an understory tree.  Tolerates a wide range of soil conditions.  Found along streams and rivers in its native range where it tolerates periodic flooding.
  • Hardy to USDA Zone 3b    Nova Scotia to Minnesota, south to Florida and Texas.
  • Oregon State Univ. campus: east of West Hall, along service road.
Click image to enlarge
  • plant habit, summer

    plant habit, summer

  • leaves and buds

    leaves and buds

  • leaves and fruit clusters

    leaves and fruit clusters

  • shoot with fruit cluster

    shoot with fruit cluster

  • leaves and fruit, comparison

    leaves and fruit, comparison

  • plant habit, fall

    plant habit, fall

  • fruit clusters, fall

    fruit clusters, fall

  • leaves and fruit, fall

    leaves and fruit, fall

  • plant habit and leaves, fall

    plant habit and leaves, fall

  • leaves, fall

    leaves, fall

  • branch, winter

    branch, winter

  • twigs and buds, winter

    twigs and buds, winter