Content tagged with "Trees, Shrubs and Woody Vines"


Image of a sycamore leaf
Platanus occidentalis
The white, smooth-looking limbs of this giant tree rise over countless streams and river banks—as well as over sidewalks and city streets. The leaves, which somewhat resemble those of maples, can reach remarkably large sizes. More

Thunberg’s Lespedeza (Shrub Lespedeza; Pink Bush Clover)

Lespedeza thunbergii
Thunberg’s lespedeza is a large, non-woody perennial shrub often cultivated as a showy, flowering ornamental. It sometimes escapes from cultivation and naturalizes in Missouri landscapes. More


tree of heaven
Ailanthus altissima
Tree-of-Heaven is a fast-growing exotic that has become common in urban areas. It is weedy and aggressive and should not be planted. Recognize it by its 2-foot-long feather-compound leaves and the unpleasant scent of the twigs when you break them. More

Trumpet Creeper (Trumpet Vine)

Photo of trumpet creeper showing cluster of flowers
Campsis radicans
Each summer, the bright orange and red “trumpets” of this woody vine decorate Missouri’s cliff faces, telephone poles, and anything else strong enough to support it. Hummingbirds zoom to trumpet creeper’s flowers for their nectar. More

Tulip Tree (Yellow Poplar, Tulip Poplar)

Liriodendron tulipifera
Though it only occurs naturally in the southeastern part of Missouri, the stately tulip tree is planted widely in lawns, parks and cemeteries. The distinctive leaves and tulip-shaped flowers make it easy to identify. More

Virginia Creeper

Image of Virginia creeper leaves
Parthenocissus quinquefolia
Occasionally confused with poison ivy, Virginia creeper can be easily identified by simply noticing that most of its leaflets are in fives, instead of threes. This delightful native vine is useful in landscaping. More

Ward’s Willow (Carolina Willow; Coastal Plain Willow; Ward Willow)

Salix caroliniana
This willow is one of the first woody species to occupy the outer edges of gravel bars in a stream. This "pioneer plant" honors an intellectual pioneer, Lester Frank Ward, who was a Civil War veteran, botanist, geologist and sociologist; he was the first president of the American Sociological Association. More

Water Hickory (Bitter Pecan)

water hickory
Carya aquatica
Water hickory grows on ground that is often under water during part of the year. The bitter nuts are consumed by ducks and other wildlife. More

Water Oak

water oak
Quercus nigra
Its range, and the interesting (and variable) shapes of the leaves easily identify water oak. This species, like many plants and animals that require wet lowland forests, has been declining in our state due to extensive clearing, rowcropping, ditching and draining in in our Bootheel counties. More

White Ash

Image of a white ash tree
Fraxinus americana
“Leaf-peepers” admire the yellows and purples this tree lends Missouri’s autumn canopy, and many birds and mammals feed on the distinctive, paddle-shaped seeds. The word “white” in the name probably refers to the pale undersides of the leaves. More