Carolina Silverbell (Halesia carolina)

Common names:
Give a thumbs up Carolina Silverbell
Give a thumbs up Silver-Bell Tree

General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Shrub
Tree
Sun Requirements: Full Sun
Full Sun to Partial Shade
Partial or Dappled Shade
Water Preferences: Mesic
Soil pH Preferences: Very strongly acid (4.5 – 5.0)
Strongly acid (5.1 – 5.5)
Moderately acid (5.6 – 6.0)
Slightly acid (6.1 – 6.5)
Minimum cold hardiness: Zone 4a -34.4 °C (-30 °F) to -31.7 °C (-25 °F)
Maximum recommended zone: Zone 8b
Plant Height: 20-40 feet
Plant Spread: 20 to 40 feet
Leaves: Good fall color
Deciduous
Fruit: Showy
Other: 4-winged brown samara about 1 inch long
Fruiting Time: Late summer or early fall
Fall
Late fall or early winter
Flowers: Showy
Flower Color: White
Bloom Size: Under 1"
Flower Time: Spring
Uses: Flowering Tree
Wildlife Attractant: Bees
Resistances: Humidity tolerant
Pollinators: Bees
Miscellaneous: Monoecious

white flowers close-up

Photo gallery:

Comments:
Posted by ILPARW (southeast Pennsylvania - Zone 6b) on Feb 1, 2018 2:32 PM

The Carolina Silverbell has been assigned a newer official scientific name of (Halesia tetraptera) that means "four wings" in Greek, so (Halesia carolina) is the same species. This is very beautiful tree in every way. The native range goes from southern West Virginia & Ohio & Illinois down into northwest Florida into much of Alabama, and there is a spot on the southern Oklahoma/Arkansas border area, growing in upland forest. It has simple leaves about 2 to 5 inches long and about 1/2 as wide that turn a pale yellow in fall. The white, sometimes pale rose, flowers are 4-lobed, bell-shaped and hang down on pendulous stalks in April-May. It bears 4-winged dry brown drupes (or samaras) with 2 to 3 seeds inside. The bark starts out smooth and gray but eventually becomes gray & brown & black ridged & furrowed with scaly plates. It grows about 1 foot/year and lives over a hundred years. It has deep, coarse, wide-spreading roots that make it difficult to transplant, and is often best to buy in containers from larger, diverse or native plant or specialty nurseries. I've only seen this species planted in arboretums, estates, and professional landscapes; it is not common. It needs an acid, good quality sandy loam or silty or good clay soil, not for compacted soils of many new subdivisions. I think it can tolerate a pH up to about 7.0.

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Posted by SongofJoy (Clarksville, TN - Zone 6b) on Nov 29, 2013 4:25 AM

Native to the central and southern United States, this tree gets its common name from its bell-shaped blossoms. The species is found as far north as West Virginia and southern Illinois, west to Oklahoma, south to northern Florida. It is, however, thinly distributed over much of its range and becoming increasingly rare in many regions.

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Discussion Threads about this plant
Thread Title Last Reply Replies
Tree Identification Please by TreeLover2 Apr 23, 2018 2:07 PM 10
Halesia and Styrax by quercusnut Oct 24, 2017 12:59 PM 2
Silver bells by lilly123456 Dec 7, 2011 7:31 PM 2

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