Three of Cincinnati’s Most Common Trees

bradford pear tree

If you run a company that does tree trimming in Cincinnati, you are never short on work. Why? Because Cincinnati is a place where trees grow. The humidity is high, and the soil is ideal for sprouting huge trees, both deciduous and coniferous.

Which are the trees that we see most often in Hamilton County? Here are three that thrive in large numbers. Two of them have lent their names to major streets in downtown Cincinnati – Sycamore and Walnut.

1. The Sycamore

Our friend, the sycamore, is the biggest deciduous tree in the eastern U.S. A healthy sycamore can grow to be 100 feet tall, which a trunk that can be 10 feet in diameter.

Also known as the buttonwood or the buttonball, the sycamore is notable for its bark, which grows in a brown-gray camouflage pattern. Underneath the camouflage bark is white or light gray wood. Older sycamores lose the camo and just have solid, light gray trunks.

Since the sycamore is so massive, it is not ideal for most people’s yards, and its huge root structure can cause neighborhood sidewalks to buckle and bend.

2. The Walnut

Walnut trees are best known for their stone fruits – the two- or three-segmented nut that is delicious to many. The walnut shell is wrinkly, giving it a distinctive and easily-recognizable look.

The two common varieties of walnut trees are the black walnut and the Persian (or English) walnut trees. The black walnut tree is what we have most often in Ohio. Since the black walnuts have very hard shells, they are not used for commercial nut production. The shelling would be too expensive. Black walnuts are, however, very flavorful.

3. The Birch

The bark of the birch tree is marked with long, horizontal lines (called lenticels), and that bark splits into thin, papery plates. Different birches produce different colors, hence the gray birch, white birch, black, silver, and yellow birch varieties. If you are doing tree trimming in Cincinnati, then you have likely worked with all of these birch colors.

Birches tend to be somewhat short-lived, and are a “pioneer species,” known for spreading quickly after a fire or other disturbance has cleared out other brush and tree growth.