Slippery elm

Silhouette - slippery elm
  • Latin name: Ulmus rubra Mühl.
  • French name: Orme rouge
  • Synonym(s): Red elm
  • Taxonomic Serial Number: 19050
Description

Leaves

  • Leaf - slippery elm

Form

  • Fragrant, widest above the middle
  • Tip elongated, base markedly oblique
  • Upper surface very rough, hairy
  • Lower surface hairy
  • About 15 veins per side, several forked

Length

  • 15–20 cm

Colour

  • Upper surface dark green
  • Lower surface paler

Margin

  • Hairy

Petiole

  • Short, hairy

Buds

  • Lateral bud and leaf scar - slippery elm

Form

  • Tip rounded
  • Flower buds almost globular

Length

  • 6 mm

Colour

  • Dark brown, with reddish-brown hairs, especially at the tip

Twigs

  • Winter twig with leaf buds and flower bud - slippery elm

Form

  • Moderately stout, hairy
  • Lenticels prominent

Colour

  • Greyish-brown

Flowers

Form

  • Each on a separate short stalk, in dense tassel-like clusters (fascicles)

Structure

  • Synoecious

Fruits

  • Fruit - slippery elm

Form

  • Almost round; with a line extending from the stalk to the shallow notch at the tip of the wing
  • Hairs cover the seedcase, otherwise hairless

Length

  • 10–15 mm

Colour

  • Hairs reddish-brown

Bark

Form

  • Shallowly furrowed with irregular, vertical, scaly ridges
  • Inner bark layers fragrant, mucilaginous

Colour

  • Brownish, outer bark layers uniform brown

 

Size

Height

  • To 25 m

Diameter

  • To 60 cm

Maximum age

  • 125 years

 

Tree form

  • Silhouette - slippery elm

Forest-grown

Trunk

  • Divides into a few wide-spreading upright limbs

Crown

  • Broad, flat-topped
  • Principal branches curve up, then spread out or droop

Root system

  • Shallow, wide-spreading

Habitat

Site

  • Rich soils along streams and adjacent slopes
  • Sometimes found on rocky ridges

Light tolerance

  • Full sunlight or light shade

 

Insects and diseases

Insects and diseases that are found most frequently and/or that cause the most damage in our Canadian forests.

Photos
  • Slippery elm
  • Slippery elm
Distribution map
Distribution map - slippery elm
Date modified: