Halesia tetraptera Ellis
Carolina silverbell is native to the southeastern United States. Trees are common in the higher elevations of the Great Smoky Mountains.
Identification: Small, irregular trees may reach 30-40' (9.1-12 m) in height. Bark is smooth and slightly rippled, with gray and green stripes, like muscles. Older trees are furrowed, and rougher. Leaves are dark green, alternate, roughly oval-shaped but quite variable, with smooth margins and pointed tips. Flowers are attractive, bell-shaped, white, hanging in clusters of up to five. Fruits are uniquely shaped, with four “wings” or sections, oval-shaped from the side, looking more like a “+” sign in cross-section. They are 1-1½" (2.5-3.8 cm) long.
Halesia tetraptera on Carolina Nature, from Will Cook
Halesia tetraptera var. tetraptera on Carolina Nature, from Will Cook
Halesia tetraptera at the Vanderbilt University Bioimages web site
Halesia tetraptera at the University of Connecticut Plant Database
Halesia tetraptera on www.treetrail.net
Halesia tetraptera at the Ohio State University PLANTFacts database
Halesia tetraptera at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
Halesia tetraptera on leafsnap.com
Halesia tetraptera description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 16 Aug 2013.
Range: Zones 5-8: