Ontario Trees & Shrubs website

White Ash
Fraxinus americana

Other common names: Cane Ash

French names: Frčne blanc

Family: Olive Family (Oleaceae)

Group: Ashes

Distinctive features: Tree; Compound opposite leaves, no teeth or a few rounded teeth. Patterned ridged bark (see photo). Buds inserted into leaf scar.

Similar species:
  •   Red Ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica)

  •   Black Ash (Fraxinus nigra)


Flowers: Spring

Leaves: Opposite/Whorled, Compound, Entire;  Opposite. Compound.

Habitat: Fields and Open Areas;  Woods, fields.

Books: Trees in Canada: 162   

Native/Non-native: Native

Status: Very common.

Notes: There's a lot of photos, because Ash are a bit hard to tell apart.

Origin and Meaning of Names:
 Scientific Name: americana: American


Photographs: 116 photographs available, of which 18 are featured on this page. SCROLL DOWN FOR PHOTOGRAPHS.

Range Map is at the bottom of the page

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

This photo shows the distinctive form of Ash (in general) in the winter. Notice how the twigs are stout and obviously opposite. This is a White Ash.

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

The entire compound leaf, upper side.

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

Under side of the entire compound leaf.

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

Upper side of a single leaflet - very smooth.

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

Underside of a single leaflet; also smooth.

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

The main leaf stalk is segmented. In the fall it falls apart in sections.

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

A Winter bud. This illustrates the "white is tight" rule for White Ash. The end side buds are close up against the terminal bud.

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

Growth form of the leaves.

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

Flowers just starting to bloom (near the end of April).

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

Flowers in mid-May.

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

And another view, almost a week later.

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

Leaves just starting to grow at the beginning of May.

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

Seeds in winter.

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

Overall form/shape.

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

Typical White Ash bark. Note the pattern of the ridges. This is distinctive.

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

Young bark just starting to develop this pattern.

White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

Even younger bark has only a faint hint of the patterning that it will take on later.


Range map for White Ash (Fraxinus americana)

PLEASE NOTE: A coloured Province or State means this species occurs somewhere in that Province/State.
The entire Province/State is coloured, regardless of where in that Province/State it occurs.

(Range map provided courtesy of the USDA website and is displayed here in accordance with their Policies)