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Fringetree (Chionanthus virginicus)

Fringetree is a deciduous tree that grows up to 30 feet tall, but smaller through most of its range. The leaves are opposite with a smooth margin. The bark is scaly with dark brown ridges and red furrows. In late spring, fragrant, white flowers mature hanging from 4- to 8-inch stalks. The small tree produces a 3/4-inch, dark blue drupe that matures in late summer. Does not grow well on acid soils.


Fruits are eaten by songbirds and small mammals.

Plant Type Tree 10-30 feet
Leaf Type Deciduous
Deer Resistance Moderate
Regions Mountain, Piedmont, Coastal Plain
Light Full Sun, Partial Sun/Shade
Soil Moist, Dry
Bloom Times Spring
Seed Times Late Summer, Fall
Wildlife Value Fleshy Fruit
NC Forest ServiceNC Cooperative Extension