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Castanea dentata (Marshall) Borkhausen. American Chestnut. Phen: Jun-Jul; Sep-Oct. Hab: Mesic and xeric forests. Dist: S. ME, s. ON, MI, c. IN, s. IL, south to c. NC, c. GA, Panhandle FL, and sc. MS.

Origin/Endemic status: Native

Other Comments: Formerly one of the most important, largest, and most abundant forest trees in the Mountains of our area, C. dentata was severely affected by chestnut blight, Cryphonectria parasitica (Murrill) Barr, introduced at New York City in 1904 on nursery stock of C. mollissima. Blight spread steadily southward, reaching our area in the 1920's and 1930's. C. dentata remains rather abundant, but now occurs only as stump sprouts and small trees, usually reinfected by blight persisting on oaks and killed at about the size of first fruit production. The accidental introduction of chestnut blight and the subsequent profound alteration of the role of chestnut is one of the most tragic ecological disasters to have affected our area. Castanea ×neglecta Dode (pro sp.) [C. dentata × pumila], occurs in our area; "the leaves of the hybrid resemble those of C. dentata in size and shape but have the vestiture and stellate trichomes of C. pumila" (Johnson 1988).

Synonymy: = C, F, Fl2, FNA3, G, Il, K1, K3, K4, Mi, NE, NY, Pa, RAB, S, Tn, Va, W, WH3, Johnson (1988)

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image of plant© Keith Bradley | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Bruce A. Sorrie | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Gary P. Fleming | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Erik Danielson source | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Scott Ward | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Scott Ward
image of plant© Bruce A. Sorrie | Original Image ⭷