White Fringetree, Chionanthus virginicus
A member of the olive family, the White Fringetree is a showy tree with a short trunk and narrow, oblong crown. It has dark green, glossy foliage and a pale gray trunk with bands of white. Growing up to 30’ tall, this tree grows well in sun to shade. Delicate fragrant white blossoms appear in drooping clusters in the spring. While flowers of male plants are showier than the females, both have sweetly fragranced blooms which are produced on previous year’s growth. This tree is noted for its reduced susceptibility to disease & insect pests and will tolerate some drought. It is suitable for a small space and tolerates urban conditions.
Female plants bear fruit that is attractive to wildlife. Many birds eat the olive-like blue fruit and the flowers attract pollinators. It is a confirmed larval host for Rustic Sphinx Moths.
Virginia Cooperative Extension programs and employment are open to all, regardless of age, color, disability, gender, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information, veteran status, or any other basis protected by law. An equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Virginia State University, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture cooperating. Edwin J. Jones, Director, Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg; M. Ray McKinnie, Administrator, 1890 Extension Program, Virginia State University, Petersburg.