Natives For Your Neighborhood is a labor of love and commitment. If you use this website, help us maintain and grow it with your tax-deductible donation.


Please scroll to the bottom for more images.
Water hickory
Carya aquatica

Copyright by: Susan Trammell

General Landscape Uses: Canopy tree along canal banks and swales.

Availability: Grown by one or two native plant nurseries in South Florida.

Description: Medium to large tree with an erect trunk and a narrow, rounded crown. Trunks to 2 feet in diameter, but usually much smaller in South Florida. Bark loose, brown, separating into plate-like scales. Leaves deciduous, compound, about 9-15 inches long, thin, dark green.

Dimensions: Typically 25-50 feet in height in South Florida; to 150 feet in Florida. Taller than broad.

Growth Rate: Moderate.

Range: Southern and central United States west to Texas and south to Palm Beach, Hendry and Lee counties. For a digitized image of Elbert Little's Florida range map, visit the Exploring Florida website.

Plant Map Map of select IRC data from peninsular Florida.

 Map of suggested ZIP codes from South Florida north to southern Brevard, Osceola, Polk, and Pasco counties.

Habitats: Floodplain forests.

Soils: Wet to moist, seasonally inundated organic soils.

Nutritional Requirements: Moderate to high; grows best with some organic content and may languish in nutrient poor soils.

Salt Water Tolerance: Low; does not tolerate flooding by salt or brackish water.

Salt Wind Tolerance: Low; salt wind may burn the leaves.

Drought Tolerance: Low; requires moist to wet soils and is intolerant of long periods of drought.

Light Requirements: Light shade to full sun.

Flower Color: Greenish.

Flower Characteristics: Male flowers in semi-showy hanging catkins.

Flowering Season: Spring.

Fruit: Nut.

Wildlife and Ecology: Provides significant food and cover for wildlife.

Horticultural Notes: Can be grown from stratified seed, sown in spring.

References: Nelson 2003, Schaefer & Tanner 1997

Copyright by: Susan Trammell

Copyright by: Shirley Denton

Copyright by: Shirley Denton

Copyright by: Shirley Denton

Other data on Carya aquatica available from:

Resources Links:
Find Native Plants!

Acknowledgements and past sponsors

Become a sponsor!

Major Sponsor:

Emergent Sponsors:

Canopy Sponsors:
Herbaceous Sponsors:

Jay Bird - @BotanizingBirdingButterflies

Florida Native Plant Nursery