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Wafer Ash, Common Hoptree - Ptelea trifoliata

Wafer Ash, Common Hoptree - Ptelea trifoliata

PriceFrom $10.00

Ptelea trifoliata, commonly known as Wafer Ash Tree or Common Hope Tree is a unique and versatile native tree prized for its distinctive foliage, fragrant flowers, and ecological significance.

General Plant Information:

•Botanical Name: Ptelea trifoliata

•Common Name: Wafer Ash Tree

•Native Range: Indigenous to eastern and central North America, including Florida, Wafer Ash Tree thrives in a variety of habitats, from woodlands and prairies to riverbanks and disturbed areas.

•Habitat: Preferring well-drained soils in sunny to partially shaded locations, Ptelea trifoliata can be found in both upland and bottomland forests, where it adds beauty and ecological value to the natural landscape.

•Size: This small to medium-sized deciduous tree typically reaches heights of 15 to 25 feet, with a rounded crown and spreading branches that create a graceful silhouette in the garden.

•Foliage: Wafer Ash Tree features compound leaves with three leaflets that resemble those of poison ivy, but are non-toxic. The foliage turns shades of yellow to orange in the fall, adding seasonal interest to the landscape.

Flowers and Fruits:

•Fragrant Flowers: In spring, Ptelea trifoliata produces clusters of small, fragrant white flowers that attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies to the garden with their nectar-rich blooms.

•Wafer-like Fruits: After flowering, Wafer Ash Tree produces clusters of wafer-like fruits that turn papery and persist into the winter, adding ornamental interest to the tree and providing food for wildlife.


•Sunlight: Thriving in full sun to partial shade, Wafer Ash Tree adapts well to a range of light conditions, making it suitable for various garden and landscape settings.

•Watering: While tolerant of drought once established, regular watering during dry spells encourages optimal growth and flowering, especially during the establishment period.

•Pruning: Light pruning may be required to shape the tree and remove dead or diseased branches, promoting overall health and vigor.

Ecological Significance:

•Wildlife Habitat: Wafer Ash Tree provides habitat and food for a variety of wildlife species, including birds, mammals, and insects. Larval host plant to some Swallowtail butterflies.

•Erosion Control: With its deep root system and spreading canopy, Ptelea trifoliata helps stabilize soils and prevent erosion in vulnerable areas, making it a valuable addition to riparian zones and disturbed landscapes.

•Medicinal Uses: In traditional herbal medicine, various parts of the Wafer Ash Tree have been used for their reputed medicinal properties, including their potential to alleviate digestive discomfort and other ailments.

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