Distinguishing Features: Nuts in a papery sheath, young twigs and leaf stems slightly fuzzy, large male catkins in the spring
- Type: Deciduous
- Form at maturity: 40 to 50 feet tall, 20 to 25 feet wide, pyramidal crown
- Leaf: Alternate, simple, deciduous leaves up to 6 inches long, dark green leaf color, yellow to purplish-red in autumn, doubly serrated leaf margin
- Flower: Monoecious, male catkins are 2 to 3 inches long, tiny female catkins are largely hidden
- Bark: Corky, mottled, tan to gray bark on mature trunks may flake to reveal an orange-brown inner bark (flaky bark)
- Fruit or Seed: Nut, 0.5 inches across, appear in clusters of 3-6 with spiny and hairy involucre husks.