Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Winged elm: A beautiful Florida native

The winged elm is so named because of its corky
The winged elm (Ulmus alata) is a graceful medium-sized tree native from Virginia to Texas and to north Central Florida. It grows well in a variety of conditions and should be more widely planted. Gil Nelson describes it as a fast grower in his "Florida's Best Native Landscape Plants." I have to agree with this assessment given my experience with this tree.

In 2010, I was on my first flowered shirt book tour of Florida after the publication of "Sustainable Gardening for Florida." I spoke to a number of the Florida Native Plant Society chapters as part of that tour. At one of those chapters, I was given a winged elm tree that had been auctioned off. The member who won the auction decided that I should have it. Even though the tree was not in good shape, I gracefully accepted his gift and brought it home.