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30 Types of Native Texas Trees (Common & Rare Varieties)


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With Texas being such a big state, encompassing 5 different hardiness zones and bordering so many different climates, you can imagine that there’s an incredible range of native Texas trees!

From the swampy, marsh climate in the East, sandy soils on the coast, dry desert conditions in the southwest, and dense clay soil in central and northern TX- there’s an ecosystem in every corner of the state!

There’s well over thirty types of trees native to Texas, so this list just gives you a glimpse.

In this article you can learn about native Texas trees from every region of the state, including fruiting and flowering trees and rare, endangered species.

30 Kinds of Trees Native to Texas to Discover Today

1. Sweet Acacia (Acacia farnesiana)

Acacia_farnesiana
Image by Mike via Wikimedia commons (CC 4.0)

The Sweet Acacia is an evergreen tree that’s considered both a small tree or a large shrub, considering its growth habit of growing equally up and out, in the form of a bush. This small tree also grows with several trunks, adding to its shrub-like appearance.

This tree is often found growing in heavy clay and loamy soils in central TX. Sweet Acacia has thorns that grow in pairs on the branches.

Its leaves are light green and grow in a spread, like a feather- very similar in appearance to the leaves of a Honey Mesquite, except smaller.

When the flowers of the Sweet Acacia bloom, they release a strong floral scent. In fact, in the 19th century, French settlers in the U.S. used these bright golden-yellow flowers to make perfumes! In addition, the bark of the tree has strong tannins which can be used for dying materials.

Other Common Names: Weesatch

Growing Zones: 9-11

Average Size at Maturity: 20 ft tall by 20 ft wide

Season: Flowers in spring, March

2. Anacahuita (Cordia boissieri)

Mexican_Olive
Image by William L. Farr via Wikimedia Commons (CC 4.0)

This tree is also called the Mexican Olive Tree due its similar appearance to olive trees and their fruit, and that it grows well in northern Mexico. This tree can be found growing in the desert climate of southwestern TX, all along the Mexican border.

This tree is also commonly used in landscaping because of its beautiful white blooms with a colorful yellow center. These trumpet-shaped flowers will blossom all throughout the summer if they receive enough water.

The Anacahuita fruits are small, white stone fruits that attract lots of wildlife with their sweet flesh. They’re also traditionally used for jellies!

Other Common Names: Anacahuite, Mexican-Olive, Wild Olive

Growing Zones: 10-11

Average Size at Maturity: 30 ft tall by 15 ft wide

Season: Flowers in summer; Fruits in winter, December-March

3. Prickly Ash (Zanthoxylum clava-herculis)

Hercules_Club
Image by Gaberlunzi via Wikimedia Commons (CC 3.0)

This tree is called Prickly Ash in Texas and many southern states, but it’s generally referred to as Hercules’ Club because of its incredible bark. This tree is one of the few in the world that has a bulging pattern like this on its bark, making it easy to identify!

Prickly Ash is a deciduous tree that grows in light and well-drained soil in central TX, often along the edges of creeks or rivers. This is just one of 5 types of Ash trees that is native to Texas.

Prickly Ash has green leaves with small, light green flowers and fruits with seed pods that attract lots of birds.

This tree’s other nickname, Tickle-Tongue, comes from the medicinal properties of its bark. Chewing the inner bark or small twigs creates a numbing feeling in the mouth, which soothes toothaches.

Other Common Names: Hercule’s Club, Tickle-Tongue, Toothache Tree

Growing Zones: 3-7

Average Size at Maturity: 20 ft tall by 15 ft wide

Season: Flowers in early spring; Fruits in early summer

4. Brazilian Bluewood (Condalia hookeri)

Condalia_hookeri
Image by Jayachandranjay via Wikimedia Commons (CC 4.0)

The Brazilian Bluewood is also considered a large shrub, due to its size and growth habit. This tree is found growing in the sandy soil of southern TX, along the coastal plains.

Although its bark is a dark brown color, it can be used for dying and creates a deep blue hue- which is why it’s called Bluewood. The wood also makes for good firewood.

This tree has green leaves with a simple green flower and a dark berry. The berry is eaten by many different animals and is edible for humans, often used to make jams.

Other Common Names: Bluewood Condalia, Brasil

Growing Zones: 9-11

Average Size at Maturity: 30 ft tall by 15 ft wide

Season: Fruits in summer

5. Bodark (Maclura pomifera)

Osage_Orange
Image by Chris Light via Wikimedia Commons (CC 4.0)

This tree is native to states in the middle U.S. and grows well in northeastern TX, particularly along the Red River, bordering Louisiana and Oklahoma.

Bodark has green leaves in the summer, which turn a bright yellow in the fall. The fall is also when its fruits, often called Horse Apples, ripen. These fruits look like oranges, but green and wrinkled, and are actually a collection of seeds.

Bodark bark is an orangish-brown color that has strong tannins used for dying. The wood seeps with a milky sap, similar to that of fig trees, and is regularly used for fence posts.

In fact, these trees were traditionally planted together in long hedges to form a natural fence. Their branches are very thorny, which keeps livestock from exiting and wildlife from entering.

Other Common Names: Osage-Orange, Bois-D’arc, Hedge-Apple, Horse Apple

Growing Zones: 5-9

Average Size at Maturity: 60 ft tall by 45 ft wide

Season: Flowers in late spring

Available at: Nature Hills

6. Rocky Mountain Juniper (Juniperus scopulorum)

As you can see in the image- despite being classified as a tree- the Rocky Mountain Juniper grows in the shape of a cone, like a big bush. This is also the most common variety of Juniper trees in all of the U.S.

As the name implies, this tree is native to the Rocky Mountains. For Texas, that means northwestern and western TX, in the panhandle and along the borders of New Mexico in the Guadalupe Mountains.

These trees are often found on rocky hillsides or growing in canyons, with loose but moist soil.

Juniper trees have rough, dark green leaves and tiny pale flowers. After two years of maturing, these trees produce small berries that are eaten by many kinds of wildlife.

Other Common Names: Rocky Mountain Cedar, Wichita Blue Juniper

Growing Zones: 3-7

Average Size at Maturity: 15 ft tall by 6 ft wide

Season: Flowers in spring

Available at: Nature Hills & Fast-Growing-Trees

7. Black Cherry (Prunus serotina var. serotina)

Prunus serotina
Image by David Stang via Wikimedia Commons (CC 4.0)

If you come across a wild cherry tree in a park or on a walk, it’s most likely Prunus serotina, although there are actually many different varieties of cherry trees that grow in Texas. In fact, almost all of the cherry tree varieties in Texas are of the Prunus genus and are all related to the Black Cherry.

It’s definitely possible that you find an ornamental variety growing as landscaping. Most of the heavy fruit-producing varieties are grown in gardens, whereas any native cherry tree you find will be the Black Cherry.

The fruits of Black Cherry trees tend to be more bitter and smaller than those grown for fruits. This native species is usually harvested for its wood more often than fruits!

Black Cherry trees have green leaves with little white flowers that grow in clusters. Its bark is reddish-brown and has splits that look like tiny cuts.

Other Common Names: Prunus serotina

Growing Zones: 4-8

Average Size at Maturity: 60-80 ft tall x 30-60 ft wide

Season: Flowers in spring; Fruits in summer

Available at: Nature Hills

8. Mexican Buckeye (Ungnadia speciosa) – Rare Species

Ungnadia speciosa
Image by Stan Shebs via Wikimedia Commons (CC 3.0)

This tree or large shrub is one of the unique species that enjoy growing on limestone rock and can be found growing on rocky hills and bluffs. Mexican Buckeye is found all through central and western TX.

Its leaves are dark green and grow in large clusters, also adding to its shrub-like appearance. In the fall, these leaves turn bright yellow. Its tiny flowers are light pink and bloom in clusters in February or March, depending on the temperatures.

Mexican Buckeyes produce a fruit that looks a lot like figs but has a very hard shell and actually contains nut-like seeds.

Other Common Names: Monilla

Growing Zones: 8-11b

Average Size at Maturity: 20 ft tall by 10 ft wide

Season: Flowers in early spring

9. Bubba Jones Desert Willow (Chilopsis linearis)

The ‘Bubba Jones’ is one of several varieties of Desert Willow that grows in Texas and northern Mexico, along with Bubba and Sweet Bubba- cultivars prized for their stunning pink flowers.

Desert Willow flowers grow in a tubular shape and range from pink, white, and lavender. In Mexico, these flowers are either dried or turned into honey which can be used as a cough remedy.

They natively grow in the dry soil of western TX but are also commonly grown as landscape trees. The wood is also commonly used for fence posts or firewood.

This tree also has a shrub-shape with a wide growth habit, resulting in an open and airy structure. These trees have green leaves, dark bark, and fruits with seed pods that attract wildlife but are inedible for humans.

Other Common Names: Flowering Willow, Desert Catalpa, Willowleaf Catalpa, Mimbre, Bow Willow

Growing Zones: 7-11

Average Size at Maturity: 30 ft tall by 20 ft wide

Season: Flowers in late spring; Fruits in late summer

Available at: Nature Hills & Fast-Growing-Trees

10. Ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba)

These stunning trees grow all over eastern TX, both natively and as landscaping trees for their amazing fall foliage.

Normally, this tree has green leaves and small flowers that bloom in the spring. However, when fall arrives the tree’s leaves turn to a vibrant yellow and the whole tree lights up with fall foliage.

The female trees produce a yellow fruit that has a foul-smelling flesh, but is completely edible. The fruit’s seed is similar to a nut and is used as an herbal remedy for digestion and memory loss problems. This fruit is actually very popular in eastern Asian medicinal practices.

Other Common Names: Autumn Gold, Raintree, Maidenhair Tree, Fossil Tree

Growing Zones: 5-9

Average Size at Maturity: 50 ft tall by 30 ft wide

Season: Flowers in late spring; Fruits in late summer

Available at: Nature Hills & Fast-Growing-Trees

11. Black Hickory (Carya texana)

Black Hickory
Image by William L. Farr via Wikimedia Commons (CC 4.0)

Black Hickory is a classic native Texas tree that can be found all over the state. The intermediate climate of Texas, being between the colder climate of northern TX and the desert climate of the south, is the perfect combination for this tree.

Black Hickory is one of many kinds of hickory trees found in Texas and even all over the country. It’s also related to the Pecan tree, both being in the Carya genus.

These trees have green leaves and small green flowers. Slightly similar to the pecan, Black Hickory trees produce a sweet nut that grows in a thin husk.

Black Hickory trees are widely used for firewood and barbeques for their fragrant smoke- when you hear “hickory-smoked” it’s with these trees!

Other Common Names: Texas Hickory

Growing Zones: 5-9

Average Size at Maturity: 60 ft tall by 40 ft wide

Season: Flowers in late spring; Fruits in late summer

Available at: Nature Hills

12. Deciduous Holly (Ilex decidua)

Ilex decidua
Image by James Steakley via Wikimedia Commons (CC 3.0)

Also considered a large shrub with its multiple trunks and widespread shape. This is the best holly tree for Texas, especially central and eastern TX, preferring moist soil and is most often found around creeks or riverbeds. This tree is also commonly grown for landscaping.

In the spring, this tree blooms with small white flowers all along its branches, which are replaced by green leaves in the summer.

The Deciduous Holly, similarly to many varieties of many that grow in the U.S., produces little red berries in the fall that stay on the branches throughout the winter.

One nickname for this tree is “Possumhaw” because its fruit resembles the fruits from Hawthorn bushes and are loved by possums!

Other Common Names: Possumhaw, Meadow Holly, Prairie Holly, Winterberry, Bearberry

Growing Zones: 5-9

Average Size at Maturity: 15 ft tall by 12 ft wide

Season: Flowers in spring; Fruits in December

Available at: Nature Hills

13. Jerusalem Thorn (Parkinsonia aculeata)

Jarusalem thorn
Image by Zeynel Cebeci via Wikimedia Commons (CC 4.0)

While this tree isn’t huge in height, it makes a bold statement with its wide-spread branches that droop down in a weeping form. Despite its dangling branches, this tree has a lightness to its look with bright green leaves and twigs.

The flowers also add to the stunning look of this tree- when in bloom, it’s covered in golden yellow flowers that droop with the rest of the tree. They typically blossom after summer rains but will sometimes open if the spring is warm enough.

As they age, the branches become a dark brown and develop thick thorns, hence the name.

This tree is most common to south and central TX, but can grow all the way up to Dallas. Jerusalem Thorn thrives in moist soils and is found all along the Rio Grande. Although, it‘s also grown as a landscape tree.

Other Common Names: Retama, Paloverde, Mexican Palo Verde, Horsebean

Growing Zones: 8-11

Average Size at Maturity: 20 ft tall by 25 ft wide

Season: Flowers in spring through summer

14. Alligator Juniper (Juniperus deppeana)

Alligator Juniper
Image by Benjamin Cody via Wikimedia Commons (CC 3.0)

Unlike many other Juniper trees, the Alligator Juniper has more of a tree form than a shrub, with a tall-reaching trunk and full crown on top. It does, however, grow in the same region as most Texan Junipers- the plains of western TX.

The leaves of the Alligator Juniper are like most Juniper leaves- bushy with a grayish-green color. In the spring, it produces small cone-shaped flowers and in the fall produces small berries that are often eaten by birds.

The fresh bark is completely smooth, but as it ages, it splits in a uniform pattern, resembling a checkerboard or alligator skin.

For this reason, the tree is sometimes used in landscaping. The wood is also very good for fence posts.

Other Common Names: Checkerbark Juniper

Growing Zones: 4-9

Average Size at Maturity: 50 ft tall by 3 ft wide

Season: Fruits in fall through winter

15. Bigtooth Maple (Acer grandidentatum)

Bigtooth Maple
Image by Howcheng via Wikimedia Commons (CC 2.0)

You can find the Bigtooth Maple in Texas most commonly in the moist and well-draining soils of central TX, in forests and along rivers and streams.

The Bigtooth Maple starts with green leaves in the summer, which all turn a vibrant orange or red in the fall, with the classic Maple fall foliage. One of the best places to enjoy this beauty is at the Guadalupe Mountains National Park.

As with most Maple species, you can harvest Maple syrup from this tree’s sweet sap!

Other Common Names: Canyon Maple, Uvalde Bigtooth Maple

Growing Zones: 6-9

Average Size at Maturity: 50 ft tall by 35 ft wide

Season: Flowers in spring

16. Mescalbean (Sophora secundiflora) – Rare Species

Sophora secundiflora
Image by Kretyen via Wikimedia Commons (CC 2.0)

This beautiful tree can be found all over- from western, central, and eastern TX. It grows really well in the limestone soil of middle TX, which is drier than the heavy clay in the north but has more moisture than the sandy soil further south.

The Mescalbean tree also grows in a shrub-shape, with multiple trunks and compact branches. It’s often grown for landscaping because of its size and ornamental flowers.

Despite being called Texas Mountain Laurel, it’s not at all related to species of Laurel trees.

The beauty of this tree culminates in the spring, with its large and lavender-colored flowers that grow in huge clusters. It’s often said that these flowers smell like grape flavoring when in bloom!

The name Mescalbean comes from the ceremonial use of the seeds by Native Americans in combination with mescal, an alcoholic drink. However, the seeds are not edible!

Other Common Names: Texas Mountain Laurel, Mescal Bean Sophora, Frijolillo, Frijolito

Growing Zones: 7-10

Average Size at Maturity: 25 ft tall by 10 ft wide

Season: Flowers in spring

17. Mimosa (Albizia julibrissin)

This tree is a very popular choice for landscaping, so you likely recognize its famous pink flowers. However popular it is, Mimosa trees typically don’t live long because they’re so susceptible to Mimosa vascular wilt.

These trees are actually native to eastern Asia, but they grow so well in eastern Texas that they’ve become just as abundant as native species. Although, they’re not considered an invasive species.

Mimosa trees have soft leaves that are spread out like the leaves of a fern. In early summer, they bloom with clusters of fluffy pink flowers.

These trees do produce seed pods at the end of the summer, but these are inedible for humans.

Other Common Names: Silktree, Bastard Tamarind, Nemu Tree, Acacia Julibrissin

Growing Zones: 6-9

Average Size at Maturity: 40 ft tall by 50 ft wide

Season: Flowers early summer

Available at: Nature Hills & Fast-Growing-Trees

18. Cherrybark Oak (Quercus pagoda)

Quercus pagoda
Image by Bruce Kirchoff via Wikimedia Commons (CC 2.0)

This Texan oak tree is especially common in the moist soils of eastern TX, which is why it’s sometimes called the “Swamp Red Oak.”

In terms of looks, this variety is very similar to most Oak trees. It has a single and strong trunk, growing upwards with a full crown. In the fall, its green leaves change color to create a full crown of orange leaves.

The Cherrybark Oak tree is highly valued in the timber industry for its especially strong wood, which can be used for furniture, lumber, or pulpwood.

Other Common Names: Swamp Red Oak

Growing Zones: 6-10

Average Size at Maturity: 100 ft tall by 70 ft wide

Season: Flowers in late spring

Available at: Nature Hills

19. Mexican White Oak (Quercus polymorpha)

Quercus polymorpha
Image by Kenraiz via Wikimedia Commons (CC 4.0)

This tree can be found all over western TX, but is truly native to Mexico and Val Verde county, in western TX, along the border. However, it wasn’t recognized as a native tree until recently, in 1992.

This is because the tree is very commonly grown for landscaping and is more prominent in Texas in yards than it is in the wild. In addition, this tree is often sold as Monterrey Oak in nurseries, which decreases the awareness of “Mexican White Oak.”

This tree’s bark is a bit darker than most Oak trees’ as well as its leaves. In the spring, it blooms with small flowers and produces acorns in the fall which wildlife love.

Other Common Names: Netleaf White Oak, Monterrey Oak

Growing Zones: 7-11

Average Size at Maturity: 40 ft tall by 30 ft wide

Season: Flowers in spring

20. Rio Grande Palmetto (Sabal mexicana)

Sabal mexicana
Image by Prahlad Balaji via Wikimedia Commons (CC 4.0)

This Palm is only native to the Rio Grande Valley area, but is planted in many parts of Texas for landscaping. Rio Grande Palmetto grows well in the southern TX climate, with its dry and sandy soil, and grows along the riverbed of coastal rivers.

However, it can grow as far north as Austin- which is zone 8b. You can see these amazing Texan palm trees thriving at the Sabal Palm Grove Sanctuary near Brownsville.

Rio Grande Palmettos have the large, fanned out leaves that are iconic to Palm trees and bloom with tiny white flowers in the spring.

The coarse fibers along the trunk of this tree can be used in composting or for creating a rough soil mixture- similar to coco coir.

Other Common Names: Texas Sabal Palm

Growing Zones: 8-11

Average Size at Maturity: 50 ft tall by 15 ft wide

Season: Flowers in spring; Fruits in summer

21. Longleaf Pine (Pinus palustris)

Pinus palustris
Image by MPF via Wikimedia Commons (CC 3.0)

These impressive trees are tall and skinny with a vertical growing habit and full crown at the top. The needles of this pine are much longer than most pine trees, which is where it gets its name from.

Longleaf Pines are one of the few native pine trees in Texas – native to eastern Texas and can be found growing all over the southeastern U.S., especially in forests with moist soils.

In spring, the Longleaf Pine blooms with deep purple-red flowers that grow in clusters. In the fall, it fruits with pinecones that are covered in soft grass to protect the seed from wildfires. Despite this adaptation, Longleaf Pines are not fire resistant.

Its wood can be used in a wide variety of ways, from flooring, fencing, heavy timber, and charcoal. Although, it’s important- as always-to be responsible when cutting these trees, as they’re home to the endangered red-cockaded woodpecker.

Other Common Names: Longstraw Pine, Georgia Pine, Southern Yellow Pine, Heart Pine

Growing Zones: 7-10

Average Size at Maturity: 120 ft tall by 40 ft wide

Season: Flowers in early spring; Fruits in the fall

Available at: Nature Hills

22. Mexican Plum (Prunus mexicana) – Rare Species

Prunus mexicana
Image by Jim Conrad via Wikimedia Commons (public domain)

Despite being called Mexican Plum, this fruit tree is native to and thrives in the moist climate of the southeastern U.S. It’s commonly found in eastern TX, but is also a popular choice for landscaping, grown as an ornamental tree.

The Mexican Plum has soft white flowers that bloom in early spring, often the first tree to bloom and making it the signal that winter has ended.

The fruit of the Mexican Plum is very similar to plums that grow on other varieties of plum trees. The dark purple plums are ripe in summer, through July and August, and can be eaten fresh off the tree or preserved for later use.

Other Common Names: Bigtree Plum, Inch Plum

Growing Zones: 7-10

Average Size at Maturity: 25 ft tall by 20 ft wide

Season: Flowers in early spring; Fruits in late summer

23. Mexican Redbud (Cercis canadensis var. mexicana)

Mexican Redbud in bloom
Image by William Herron via Flickr

The Mexican Redbud is one of many varieties of Cercis canadensis, which is commonly called the Eastern Redbud. Redbuds are widely considered large shrubs as they grow with multiple trunks and have a wide spread.

The Mexican Redbud is native to southwestern TX and can be found all along the U.S.-Mexico border, especially in shady canyons and rocky hills. However, this shrub is often grown for landscaping because of its beautiful and bright flowers.

In mid-spring, the whole shrub is covered in vibrant purple-pink flowers that bloom in large clusters. The flowers have a strong floral scent and are edible! They’re often pickled or put in salads.

In the summer, the Mexican Redbud is covered in green leaves and in the fall, it produces seeds. Its bark is rough and cracked, which can host bugs and diseases- something to keep in mind if growing this for landscaping.

Other Common Names: Mexicana Redbud

Growing Zones: 5-9

Average Size at Maturity: 15 ft tall by 20 ft wide

Season: Flowers in spring

24. Sassafras (Sassafras albidum)

Sassafras tree
Image by Dan Keck via Flickr

This tree is tall and slender, with branches that grow up instead of branching out to form a crown. Sassafras grows all over the U.S. and in almost all regions of Texas, except for very far south.

This tree is well known for its stunning appearance, with bright fall foliage and white bark in the winter. Sassafras blooms with green flowers in the spring, followed by green leaves in the summer, and finishes with a head of orange and red in fall.

After the leaves fall, the tree produces dark berries that pop against the white bark and attract lots of birds.

The bark can be boiled to make the sweet “sassafras oil,” which was the main ingredient in the original root beer!

Other Common Names: Ague Tree, White Sassafras, Cinnamon Wood, Mitten Tree, Saloop, Sassafras variifolium

Growing Zones: 4-9

Average Size at Maturity: 60 ft tall by 40 ft wide

Season: Flowers in spring

Available at: Nature Hills & Fast-Growing-Trees

25. Carolina Buckthorn (Frangula caroliniana) – Rare Species

Carolina Buckthorn
Image by Mason Brock via Wikimedia Commons (public domain)

Carolina Buckthorn is a deciduous tree or large shrub that naturally grows in the understory of forests. This shrub can be found in many regions of TX and is also grown for landscaping.

Carolina Buckthorn blooms with tiny, pale green flowers in the spring and is covered in dark green foliage throughout the summer.

In late late summer, Carolina Buckthorn produces small berries that attract lots of birds. Then in the fall, the Carolina Buckthorn transforms into a vibrant orange bush.

Other Common Names: Indian-Cherry, Yellow Buckthorn, Carolina False Buckthorn, Yellowwood,

Growing Zones: 5-9

Average Size at Maturity: 20 ft tall by 15 ft wide

Season: Flowers in spring; Fruits in late summer to early fall

26. Black Walnut (Juglans nigra)

The Black Walnut is native to North America and can be found growing in the wild all over the country. In Texas, the trees grow best in eastern TX, with more moist soil, but can grow as far west as San Antonio.

There’s actually two major varieties of walnut trees, which are the Black Walnut and English Walnut. As you might expect, the English Walnut is native to Europe and is only grown in the U.S. in orchards for its tastier nut.

Most walnuts you buy in stores come from English Walnuts, but the nuts from Black Walnuts are completely edible, just slightly more bitter. These walnuts are ripe in September to October.

The roots and nuts husks contain a toxin called juglone which inhibits plant growth. This is why walnut trees grow on their own- keep this in mind if you want to plant one on your property!

Other Common Names: Eastern Black Walnut, American Black Walnut

Growing Zones: 4-9

Average Size at Maturity: 100 ft tall by 100 ft wide

Season: Flowers in early spring; Fruit in early fall, October

Available at: Nature Hills & Fast-Growing-Trees

27. Black Willow (Salix nigra)

Salix nigra
Image by Bruce Marlin via Wikimedia Commons (CC 2.5)

Despite being a large tree- sometimes growing to 100 ft tall- the Black Willow usually grows with several trunks. Black Willows grow all over Texas but grow especially well in moist soils along streams or creeks.

In the spring, Black Willows bloom with tiny, fluffy white flowers. Then in the fall, this tree is covered in golden fall foliage.

Black Willow wood is too soft to be used a hardwood, however it’s great for charcoal and is sometimes used for artificial limbs! Also, its bark has salicylic acid which is the primary ingredient in aspirin.

Other Common Names: Swamp Willow, Sauz, Gulf Willow, Salix ambigua

Growing Zones: 4-9

Average Size at Maturity: 60 ft tall by 60 ft wide

Season: Flowers in spring; Fruits in late summer

Available at: Nature Hills

28. American Witch Hazel (Hamamelis virginiana)

American Witchhazel
Image by Andreas Rockstein via Flickr

Witch Hazel is a large shrub that grows in dense and moist soil, most often in eastern TX but also commonly in central TX. It’s typically found growing at the edge of forests or along streams.

The tree has yellowish-green leaves throughout the summer and then bright orange leaves in the fall. Its flowers are yellow and very showy, taking over the whole plant.

Witch Hazel is one of the few plants that blooms in the fall, after most trees have dropped their leaves!

“Witch Hazel” may sound familiar to you, since it’s commonly sold as or in skin care products. The wood is distilled into a potent liquid that’s effective in healing bruises, burns, or scars.

Other Common Names: Virginian Witch Hazel, Snapping Hazel Nut, Winter Bloom

Growing Zones: 3-8

Average Size at Maturity: 20 ft tall by 20 ft wide

Season: Flowers in fall

29. Mexican Ash (Fraxinus berlandieriana)

Fraxinus berlandieriana
Image by Jesus Cabrera via Flickr

The Mexican Ash is smaller than most other Ash species, many of which grow around the U.S. and reach upwards of 70-80 feet. Its smaller height allows this tree to reach full size much sooner than other Ash trees.

For this reason, Mexican Ash is commonly used in landscaping throughout southern TX to fill up yards or create a natural fence. However, Mexican Ash is often sold at nurseries as Arizona Ash, which is in fact Fraxinus velutina.

Mexican Ash is a deciduous tree that often grows along riverbeds. Visually, it’s pretty modest, with green leaves and small flowers.

Its wood is great for firewood and, as old folk stories go, it repels rattlesnakes!

Other Common Names: Berlandier Ash, Rio Grande Ash

Growing Zones: 6-10

Average Size at Maturity: 40 ft tall by 30 ft wide

Season: Flowers in spring

30. Pecan (Carya illinoinensis)

Pecan Tree
Image by Forest & Kim Starr via Flickr

Saving the best for last, the grand Pecan tree- the state tree of Texas! These trees grow to impressive heights and will spread out quite wide if growing in an open space.

Pecan trees can be found all over Texas, but most likely in the moist soils in the heart of Texas. However, they’re also very widely planted in landscaping or in orchards for the nuts.

Because the nuts are so popular, there are now tons of different varieties of Pecan trees among many nut trees grown in Texas.

Pecan trees have thorny branches and bloom with tiny, fluffy flowers. The pecan nuts are grown in thin husks and vary a lot in size. Along with the nuts, Pecan wood is used for barbeques to add a smoky flavor.

Other Common Names: Pecan Hickory, Hardy Pecan, Carya Pecan, Hicoria Pecan

Growing Zones: 5-9

Average Size at Maturity: 100 ft tall by 70 ft wide

Season: Flowers in early spring

Available at: Nature Hills & Fast-Growing-Trees

And Many More!

While this list is fairly comprehensive- covering all regions of Texas and all different kinds of trees- there’s still so many trees that weren’t mentioned, and many we’re still learning about!

If you would like to see a complete list of trees that grow in Texas, both native and non-native, check out Trees of Texas, an online database compiled by researchers at Texas A&M University.

If you live in central TX, or are simply interested in learning more about Texas trees, the Austin government created a visual guide for identifying native trees in central Texas.

I hope that with all these resources you can expand your knowledge about native Texas trees and might begin to identify, forage, or grow them!

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