Plant of the day: Oregon ash

Oregon ash is a stately tree of the riverbanks. It grows tall and upright, creating an umbrella of sweeping branches and bright green leaves. In the late summer the female plants become heavily decorated with winged seed-pods called samaras–these trees are dioecious, meaning each plant is either male or female (instead of both, as most plants are).

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Right now, the seeds are ripening as the leaves are yellowing and beginning to fall.

The range of Oregon ash (Fraxinus latifolia) is from British Columbia to Riverside County near LA, in a belt along the coast. Look for pinnate leaves, where each “leaf” is composed of five to nine large, paired leaflets. The photos here were taken in Cascade Canyon of Fairfax, and also on the Marin Municipal Water District.

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Filed under Good for gardens, Native, Plant of the day

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