Black Ash

Fraxinus nigra

Family: Oleaceae (oh-lee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Fraxinus (FRAK-si-nus) (Info)
Species: nigra (NY-gruh) (Info)



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Water Requirements:

Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


over 40 ft. (12 m)


30-40 ft. (9-12 m)


USDA Zone 2b: to -42.7 C (-45 F)

USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)

USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)

USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Sun to Partial Shade



Bloom Color:


Bloom Time:

Mid Spring

Late Spring/Early Summer


Grown for foliage


Good Fall Color

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

5.1 to 5.5 (strongly acidic)

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

8.6 to 9.0 (strongly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

From herbaceous stem cuttings

From woody stem cuttings

From softwood cuttings

From semi-hardwood cuttings

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse

From seed; stratify if sowing indoors

Seed Collecting:

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Lisle, Illinois

Benton, Kentucky

Belfield, North Dakota

Urbana, Ohio

Birdsboro, Pennsylvania

Gardeners' Notes:


On Mar 29, 2015, nlafrance3 from Edmonton, AB (Zone 4a) wrote:

Very hardy tree all the way up to Northwest Territories, Canada. Zone 2 or hardier. Has problems with pests. Is a little picky about planting spot. Used to be a popular boulevard tree in Edmonton, Ab until all the trees started becoming diseased.


On Dec 12, 2013, Rickwebb from Downingtown, PA wrote:

I bought one Black Ash sapling at a native plant nursery in southeast PA in 2011 and gave it to a land preserve, but the warden did not properly care for it by watering it and it died. In 2011, I found one large specimen in the Ash Collection at Morton Arboretum in Lisle, IL, planted near the little Du Page River. It was too close to the other ash species, needing more room. When I returned in 2017, I saw that the Arboretum had removed much of the ashes in the collection, including the Black Ash. I finally found in August 2017 a wild specimen, being a young tree about 25 feet high at Hibernia County Park in se PA, but it was way bent over because of being shaded by other bigger trees. Black Ash can make a good shade tree, adapting to regular landscapes. It grows about 2 to 3 feet/year and... read more


On Nov 12, 2004, melody from Benton, KY (Zone 7a) wrote:

A tree of swamps and bottomlands. It's trunk bark is rather tight and furrowed but may be somewhat scaly. The compound leaves are 12" to 16" long. The tree can get quite tall ....from 40' to 80'.

This is also known as the Hoop, or Basket Ash. Short logs or planks when hammered repeatedly on the ends, split along the annual growth rings into thin sheets that can be cut into thin strips. These are used in making baskets, chair seats, barrel hoops, etc. Knotty burls on the trunk are made into veneers and fine furniture.