Ailanthus altissima at Hailey Park

Ailanthus altissima 0

Ailanthus altissima
early September 2015

Grid reference ST 14881 78816
Common name Tree of heaven
Origin North China
Deciduous Yes
Height 12M September 2015
Girth 120cm September 2015
Reference 307

One of a group of trees at the south east corner of the park alongside Mary Street. This is a female tree.

Ailanthus altissima bark

Ailanthus altissima bark
September 2015

Ailanthus altissima foliage

Ailanthus altissima foliage
early September 2015

Ailanthus altissima seed

Ailanthus altissima seed
early September 2015

General tree description

Ailanthus altissima is a tall, fast-growing tree reaching heights of 30 metres. It has smooth, dark grey bark and huge leaves, 30 to 60cm or more, pinnate with up to 20 pairs of leaflets. They emerge pink but mature to dark green. The flowers are yellowish green or cream plumes appearing in mid summer. Ailanthus altissima is dioecious, with male and female flowers being borne on different individual trees. Male trees produce many more flowers then females, making the male flowers more conspicuous, and they emit an unpleasant odour while flowering. Female trees have huge bunches of fruits similar to ash-keys, each fruit having a seed at its centre. The seeds are initially green and ripen to red in late summer.