pignut hickory Juglandaceae Carya
glabra (Mill.) Sweet
|Leaf: Alternate, pinnately compound, 8 to 12 inches long, with 5 (sometimes 7) leaflets, leaflets are lanceolate and serrate, rachis slender and glabrous, green above and paler below.
Flower: Species is monoecious; males are yellow-green, drooping catkins, with three hanging from one stalk, 2 to 3 inches long; females are very short and found in clusters at the end of the branches, both appear in spring.
Fruit: Obovoid to pear-shaped, 1 to 2 inches long, with a thin husk that only partially splits upon maturation; nut is not ribbed, fairly round but flattened, seed is somewhat bitter; ripening in early fall.
Twig: Moderately stout to slender (when compared to the other hickories) and glabrous; leaf scars are 3-lobed to cordate - best described as a "monkey face"; terminal bud is small (1/4 inch), ovate and light brown in color.
Bark: Initially smooth, and light gray, soon developing scaly ridges; the bark on older trees has obvious close interlacing shaggy-topped ridges.
Form: A medium sized to large tree capable of reaching over 100 feet tall, with a rounded crown and a straight trunk.
Looks like: red hickory
- bitternut hickory
- shagbark hickory
- mockernut hickory
| Additional Range Information:
Carya glabra is native to North America.
Range may be expanded by planting.
See states reporting pignut hickory.
Fall Color Wood
| External Links:
Silvics of North America
USDA Plants Database
|© Copyright 2015, Virginia Tech|
Dept. of Forest Resources
and Environmental Conservation,
all rights reserved.
Photos and text by: John Seiler,
Edward Jensen, Alex Niemiera,
and John Peterson