American Hop Hornbeam

Arbor Walk #112

Native to much of the continental U.S., the American Hop Hornbeam is a great tree to plant. It requires little maintenance and suffers from no serious pest or disease problems. Besides that, it also has orangish-brown, loose bark and catkins that stay on over winter making it an interesting and beautiful tree year-round.

The common name comes from its hop-like fruit, but one of its other common names, Ironwood, is used for a close relative American Hornbeam, or Carpinus caroliniana, as well. These trees are distinct species and have very different characteristics, but because of the similar and same common names, they are often confused with each other. The most obvious difference is the bark of each tree. The American Hornbeam has smooth, “muscled” bark while the American Hop Hornbeam has loose, “shreddy” bark.

Common Name(s)American Hop Hornbeam, Eastern Hop Hornbeam, Ironwood
Latin NameOstrya virginiana
Indigenous Name(s)
Commercial Name

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