American chestnut

( Castanea Dentata )

American chestnut
  • The most abundant and important tree in the eastern US before chestnut blight nearly wiped it out.  With the impending release of a blight resistant clone it is now critical to plant as many trees of diverse genetics to cross with the resistant trees to produce nuts that will exhibit genetic diversity but retain the desired resistant traits.

Ornamental features:

  • Broad rounded crown in full sun but tall straight clear trunk in shade. Lumber is straight grained and rot resistant.
  • Flowers annually from late June to July

Wildlife value:

  • A very fast growing forest tree, best grown in full sun.
  • Was once the most important mast producing tree providing critical food for wildlife and humans. Produces prodigious quantities of sweet edible nuts year after year.
  • Produces nuts at 6 to 8 years of age

Horticulture profile:

  • Zone 4 to 7   Native from Maine to Georgia
  • Grows 60 to 80 ft Tall x 30 to 50ft Wide.
  • Fast growth rate 20 to 35 ft in 10 years. Long lived.
  • Flowers bloom in early June to July. Flowers are self-sterile; thus they require cross pollination to set nuts.
  • Soil adaptable, prefers well drained acid soils pH 5 - 6 .