Forest EcologyGeneral SilviculturePlant Taxonomy

Fraxinus excelsior L.

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Fraxinus excelsior L. Family


Fraxinus excelsior L. English Name

European Ash

Fraxinus excelsior L. Local Name


Fraxinus excelsior L.

Fraxinus excelsior L. Description

This plant is a large deciduous tree growing up to height of 12-18m sometimes more than 43m with a trunk diameter of about 2-3m. The bark of mature tree is thick and vertically fissured. The leaves are of the 20-35cm in diameter and are opposite. The leaves flourish late in spring, and the fall early in autumn. The flowers are borne in short panicles. The fruit is a samara type fruit, and it is about 2.5-4.5cm long and 5-8mm wide. If the fruit is collected and planted in soil when it is not fully ripened and still green, it will germinate in short amount of time, however once the fruit is fully ripened and brown, it will not germinate.

Fraxinus excelsior L.

Fraxinus excelsior L. Distribution

This plant is native to Europe from northern Spain to Russia, and from southern Fennoscandia to northern Greece. It is also reflected as native in south-western Asia from northern Turkey east to the Caucasus and Alborz mountains. The northernmost location is in Norway. The species is widely cultivated and reportedly naturalized in New Zealand and in scattered locales in the United States and Canada. It is native throughout the British Isles, as in northern Scotland. According to flora of Pakistan, this specie has also been cultivated in Pakistan.

Fraxinus excelsior L.

Fraxinus excelsior L. Uses

It has bot edible and medicinal uses. Underdeveloped seed are usually pickled by steeping in vinegar and, and then used as a sauce eaten with the foods. The leaves are occasionally used as an ingredient for tea making. Edible oil comparable to sunflower oil is obtained from the seed. The leaves are astringent, cathartic, diaphoretic, mildly diuretic, laxative and purgative. The bark is antiperiodic, astringent and a tonic with bitter taste. The seeds, including their wings, have been used as a carminative.

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