Chionanthus virginicus
Common name: 
White Fringetree
Pronunciation: 
ki-o-NAN-thus (kee-on-ANTH-us) ver-JIN-i-kus
Family: 
Oleaceae
Genus: 
Type: 
Broadleaf
Native to (or naturalized in) Oregon: 
No
  • Deciduous, large shrub or small tree, spreading, open, 12-20 ft (4-6 m) tall with an equal spread, larger in the wild.  Leaves simple, opposite, sub-opposite, narrow-elliptic to oblong or obovate-oblong, 7.5-20 cm long, acute to acuminate, margin entire, glossy dark green above, underside paler and pubescent, at least on veins.  Dioecious - male and female plants, but some have perfect flowers.   White flowers showy, in fleecy, soft clusters in late spring.  Fruit about 13 mm long, egg-shaped, dark blue in late summer.
  • Sun to partial shade.  Adaptable but does best in moist, fertile, acid soils.  Slow growing.  Male trees reportedly have showier flowers.
  • Hardy to USDA Zone 4    Native range from southern New Jersey to Florida and Texas.
  • chionanthus: from the Greek, chion, snow, and anthos, flower, referring to the white flowers.   viginicus: of Virginia.
  • Oregon State Univ. campus: southeast of Dixon Lodge, near sidewalk along Jefferson Ave.
Click image to enlarge
  • plant habit, flowering

    plant habit, flowering

  • plant habit, flowering

    plant habit, flowering

  • flowers and leaves

    flowers and leaves

  • flowers

    flowers

  • leaves

    leaves

  • plant habit, shady site

    plant habit, shady site

  • leaf

    leaf

  • immature fruit

    immature fruit

  • plant habit, fall

    plant habit, fall

  • leaves, fall

    leaves, fall

  • winter twigs, buds

    winter twigs, buds