Trees of Alabama and the Southeast

Lisa Samuelson, Ph.D.
School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences
Auburn University

Water Hickory
Carya aquatica

Leaves are compound, alternate, deciduous, usually with 11-13 sickle-shaped leaflets, and maroon glands or pubescence on the underside. Twigs are slender with yellow, valvate buds. Bark is gray and scaly, breaking into loose plates. Fruit is an angled, flattened nut enclosed in 4-winged, yellow-brown, glandular husk. Form is up to 30 m (100 ft) in height and 1 m (3 ft) in diameter. Water hickory is found in swamps and bottomlands in the southern Coastal Plain. The wood suffers from cracking and the nuts are very bitter.

Photographs by Mike Hogan.

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