Eastern Hophornbeam

All About the Eastern Hophornbeam:

Scientific Nomenclature: Ostrya virginiana

Common Names: Eastern hophornbeam, ironwood, leverwood

Mature Height: 25–40 feet

Mature Spread: 20–30 feet

Growth Rate: Slow

Attracts Wildlife: Select butterfly species, birds and mammals

Messiness: Drops leaves in autumn, sometimes early autumn. Flowers from the spring drop in summer or are followed by fruit that persists from summer until winter. 

Shape: Round

Native to Kentucky: Yes

Preferred Soils: Performs well in most soils. Prefers occasionally dry, well-drained or even moist clay, loam or sand. Does well in acidic (<6.0pH), neutral (6.0–8.0pH) or alkaline (>8.0pH) soils.

Screening: Typically an ornamental tree, eastern hophornbeams can be pruned and maintained to create a very interesting hedge. 

Drought Tolerance: Tolerates drought, soil compaction and is resistant to fires.

Coniferous or Deciduous: Deciduous

Pruning: No pruning is necessary; however, if it's used as a screening plant it should be pruned regularly to maintain the shape of the hedge. 

Climate Quick Facts:

Following being planted as a sapling, over 20 years one Eastern hophornbeam will:

  • Sequester ~310 pounds of CO2.
  • Reduce stormwater runoff by 250 gallons.