Celtis occidentalisCeltis occidentalis

  • BOTANICAL NAME: Celtis occidentalis
  • PRONUNCIATION: SEL-tis ok-si-den-TA-lis
  • COMMON NAME: Hackberry
  • FAMILY: Ulmaceae
  • NATIVITY: Central to southeast U.S. in river valleys and rich, upland slopes.
  • GROWTH HABIT: Round-headed to irregular, 40'-60' tall; lower branches drooping. Moderate growth rate.
  • HARDINESS: Zone 2-9
  • CULTURE: Full sun in rich, moist soils; adaptable to many soils and adverse conditions. Well-suited to midwestern U.S. growing conditions.
  • FACULTATIVE STATUS:  Facultative Upland
  • LANDSCAPE USE: Tolerant of urban growing conditions; easily transplanted.
  • FOLIAGE: Alternate, simple, 2"-5" long, ovate to oblong, margins serrate except at base. Oblique (uneven) base.
  • BUDS: Chestnut-brown, 1/4" long.
  • BARK: Twig is lenticelled and has a chambered pitch. Gray-brown trunk and older branches develop corky ridges which can be warty.
  • FRUIT: Drupe 1/4" long with distinctive datelike flavor when carefully chewed. (Avoid the one hard seed.)
  • PESTS: Nipple gall (aphids), witches broom (mites and fungus).
    • `Prairie Pride' - Glossy-green foliage, compact crown. Does not develop whitches broom.
    • C. sinensis - Japanese Hackberry promises to be a disease-and insect-free alternative to this sometimes troublesome species. Under evaluation at the Morris Arboretum.



University of Delaware

University of Delaware Botanic GardensNewark, DE 19716Phone: 302 831-0153