Flowering Ash (Manna Ash)


Fraxinus ornus

Leaves: Deciduous. Compound leaf is 5-8” long, usually with 7 leaflets (5-9), each leaflet 2-4” long, ¾-1¾” wide, oval shaped with a point at the end. Irregularly serrate leaf edge and dull dark green color. The autumn color is variable, yellow to purplish.

Bark/Twigs: Bark is smooth and gray, even on older trees.

Flowers/Fruit: Showy, off-white, fragrant flowers. Borne in 5” long clusters (panicles) in May.

Mature size and shape: Large. 40-50’h. Rounded, spreading form.

General information/special features: Plant in full sun. A sugary extract from the sap was compared in late mediaeval times with the biblical manna, giving rise to the English name of the tree. In fact, the sugar mannose and the sugar alcohol mannitol both derive their name from the extract.

Landscape use and Maintenance: Ornamental shade tree. Average growing rate. Average maintenance.

USDA Hardiness Zone: 6-9

Family/Origin: Oleaceae – Olive. Native to southeastern Europe and western Asia.

Campus use: Extremely uncommon. Can be found east of the Officer’s Club (Bld 649).