Coefficient of Conservatism:
Coefficient of Wetness:
SHELLBARK HICKORY, KINGNUT HICKORY
A. A. Reznicek
River banks and rich floodplain and wet lowland decicuous forests, often on clayey or loamy soils.
The stout branchlets and twigs of this species contrast (as do the very large silvery brown buds and large fruit) with the more slender (or smaller) ones of other species in the genus. Mature first year twigs are a distinctive pale orange-brown color, with especially orange-tinted lenticels, in contrast to the darker brown typical of Carya ovata. The bark becomes "shaggy" with age, but appears to remain more or less smooth for longer than C. ovata.
Larger seedlings and saplings typically have the bud scales conspicuously persistent for a year or more, and the leaf rachis also persists through the winter, becoming tough and arched upon drying. Both these persistent parts allow small vegetative individuals to be recognized through much of the spring and summer. Large fruiting trees have the leaves and bud scales more normally deciduous.