Drake Elm

Middle-aged Drake Elm

Middle-Aged Drake Elm - Enlarge

Uses Shade Tree
Common Names Chinese Elm, Drake Elm
Scientific Name Ulmus parvifolia
Cold Hardiness Yes
Light Needs Full to Partial Sun
Flower Green, Inconspicuous
Fall Color Yellow
Water Needs Moderate
Leaves Lighter Green
Evergreen/Decidiuous Semi Evergreen, short period without leaves
Mature Height 30 to 40 feet
Growth Rate Fast

Originally from China, Japan, North Korea and Vietnam, the lacey and feathery, soft look of the Drake elm’s crown and its slender trunk adds a gentle addition to the Orlando homes that welcome its presence. Known to be fast-growing, they can reach up to 60′ to become a favorite shade tree. They do require a good bit of lawn for their root spread and you need to make certain the soil drains well. You won’t want to put it in damp or wet locations and if you can find the elm a sunny spot to inhabit it will grow happily.

One of those trees that can fall victim to the Dutch elm disease, horticulturists tell us that problem can be avoided by cutting them back “hard” every 5 – 10 years. The Drake has small, glossy, green leaves that hang on into late autumn or early winter. It will bloom in early autumn, putting out small flowers, and eventually its winged fruit to follow.

Notice the mottled reddish bark on the trunk by clicking the photograph and zooming in.