Scientific Name: Celtis occidentalis

Pecan (Carya illinoinensis)

  • Yields thin, 4-angled husks in clusters of 3–6 that turn from yellow-green to brown as they ripen. They enclose a 1 1/2″-2″ long, hard, oblong, light brown to reddish brown shell with a pointed tip and rounded base. Pecans are actually considered a fruit and not a nut. 
  • Features compound leaves that are up to 20″ in length and consist of 9–17 spearhead-shaped leaflets that are 4–8″ long. The leaflets are slightly toothed.
  • Grows to a height of 70–100′ and a spread of 40–75′ at maturity. Grows up to 300 years. 

Fun Fact: The word “pecan” comes from an Algonquin word that means “a nut that requires a stone to crack” because of the hard shell.


Continue the Tree Tour!

This tour was created in partnership with:
Land Trust of North Alabama
Society of American Foresters – Mountain Lakes Chapter
U.S. Forest Service Southern Research Station
Alabama A&M Forestry & Ecology Center