White Ash

Fraxinus americana


The White Ash is a common native deciduous tree found through most of Virginia. The name comes from the light underside to the leaves. There are an estimated 8 billion ash trees in North America. Most of them are either White Ash or Green Ash, but the two species are difficult to tell apart. Both species have been severely affected by the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), an invasive beetle from Asia. Since its accidental introduction into the United States and Canada in the 1990s, and its subsequent detection in 2002, the EAB has killed at least 50 million ash trees and threatens to kill most of the ash trees in America. An infested tree can be recognized by premature fall color and leaf aging observed on affected branches between August and the end of September. Many ash trees in both Northern Virginia and the District of Columbia have already been infected and cut down. The EAB rapidly kills the White Ash, but usually only after Green and Black Ash trees have been eliminated.

Identification Tools

White Ash identification
Missouri Botanical Garden VA Tech Dendrology

General Ash identification
Michigan State University Vanderbilt University Arboretum


North America Virginia

White Ash Tree
Leaves and seeds high in a large White Ash tree in the north end of the park

White Ash sapling
A young White Ash sapling

White Ash sapling
A compound White Ash leaf, showing 7 leaflets

White Ash sapling
The opposite branching structure of a White Ash tree

White Ash bark
Bark of a White Ash

White Ash seeds
A cluster of freshly fallen White Ash seeds

White Ash flowers
Small dark male flowers high up in a White Ash next to the stream, blooming in April

White Ash flowers
Close-up of small dark male White Ash flowers

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