two-wing silverbell
Halesia diptera Ellis
  • ALTERNATE COMMON NAME: squirrel bread
  • LEAVES: alternate, simple, deciduous, blades thin, oval, obovate, to suborbicular, 3.5-6” long by 1.5-4” broad (relatively large for simple unlobed leaves), ranging from half as broad as long to about as broad as long; margins irregularly serrate-dentate, teeth gland-tipped; petioles >1/2” long; surfaces of mature blades sparsely stellate-pubescent, surfaces of emerging leaves more pubescent; leaf veins pale and inconspicuous
  • FLOWER: perfect (bisexual), pendant, showy; corolla white, 4-lobed, the petals united basally; flowering in spring prior to or at the onset of leaf-out
  • FRUIT: dry drupe 1-2” long, elliptic in shape, broadly two-winged, edible when green and relatively soft
  • TWIGS: stellate pubescent; pith chambered or diaphragmed, white
  • BARK: brown to reddish-brown, with longitudinal fissures and scaly ridges
  • FORM: shrub to small tree, deciduous
  • HABITAT: mesic wooded slopes and stream banks
  • WETLAND DESIGNATION: Facultative (FAC): Occurs in wetlands or non-wetlands of the Atlantic and Gulf Coast Plain Region
  • RANGE: Coastal Plain from east Texas to Florida and Georgia  [MAP]
  • USES: ornamental; fruits are edible when immature, tasting sour-acidic
  • WILDLIFE: fruit eaten by squirrels; beaver tree
  • Best Recognition Features:
    1. relatively large simple unlobed blades with inconspicuous veins
    2. petiole >1/2”
    3. stellate pubescence
    4. chambered pith
    5. distinctive broadly two-winged fruit