Trees and Shrubs

Fall colors
A little bit of color holding on in late fall at Buffalo Point.

NPS

The rugged region of the Buffalo National River contains more than one hundred different species of trees and shrubs. The spring and fall seasons bring a variety of color to the Ozarks landscape, unleashing plentiful evidence of the diversity of this area's forests. In the spring, redbuds, dogwoods, and serviceberries dapple the mountainsides with pink, white, and purple blossoms amongst sprightly hues of green. In the fall, the hills appear ablaze with leaves of pink, rusty red, orange, gold, and maroon.

Upland areas are predominantly oak-hickory forests with a variety of other hardwood species interspersed. In bottomlands near the creeks and river you'll also find sycamore, river birch, silver maple, and willow. The park trails offer some of the best places for viewing native trees and shrubs. This checklist highlights the more common species.

Habitat Key

The following symbols have been used to indicate the type of habitat where trees and shrubs can be found:

W Woodlands
B Bluffs/dry areas/glades
S Streams/swampy areas
M Moist soil
L Lowlands
U Uplands
O Open areas/fields
V Variety of areas

Tree/Shrub Checklist

Family Species Habitat
Pine, Cedar Shortleaf Pine (Pinus echinata) V
Ashe Juniper (Juniperus ashei) B
Eastern Red Cedar (Juniperus virginiana) V
Willow Eastern Cottonwood (Populus deltoides) S
Black Willow (Salix nigra) S
Walnut, Birch Shagbark Hickory (Carya ovata) M
Black Hickory (Carya texana) V
Mockernut Hickory (Carya tomentosa) V
Black Walnut (Juglans nigra) V
River Birch (Betula nigra) S
Ironwood (Carpinus caroliniana) S, M
Beech, Oaks Ozark Chinquapin (Castanea pumila var. ozarkensis) V
Beech (Fagus grandifolia) S, M
White Oak (Quercus alba) V
Chinkapin Oak (Quercus muehlenbergii) V
Post Oak (Quercus stellata var. stellata) V
Southern Red Oak (Quercus falcate var. falcata) V
Blackjack Oak (Quercus marilandica) B
Northern Red Oak (Quercus rubra) M, S
Black Oak (Quercus velutina) V
Elm, Mulberry, Magnolia Sugarberry (Celtis laevigata) V
Hackberry (Celtis occidentalis) V
Winged Elm (Ulmus alata) V
American Elm (Ulmus americana) M
Slippery Elm (Ulmus rubra) V
Osage Orange (Maclura pomifera) V
Red Mulberry (Morus rubra) M
Umbrella Magnolia (Magnolia tripetala) M
Custard Apple, Laurel Pawpaw (Asimina triloba) M, S
Sassafras (Sassafras albidum) O
Witch Hazel, Plane Tree Common Witch Hazel (Hamamelis virginiana) S, M
Sweetgum (Liquidambar styraciflua) V
Sycamore (Platanus occidentalis) V
Willow Serviceberry/Sarvis (Amelanchier arborea) V
Cockspur Hawthorn (Crataegus crus-galli) W, O
Chickasaw Plum (Prunus angustifolia) W, O
Big Tree Plum (Prunus mexicana) W
Black Cherry (Prunus serotina) V
Pea Redbud (Cercis canadensis) V
Honey Locust (Gleditsia triancanthos) V
Black Locust (Robinia pseudo-acacia) V
Cashew Smooth Sumac (Rhus glabra) V
Maple Box Elder (Acer negundo) L
Red Maple (Acer rubrum var. rubrum) L
Sugar Maple (Acer saccharum) M
Linden, Dogwood American Basswood (Tilia americana) S
Rough-Leaved Dogwood (Cornus drummondii) V
Flowering Dogwood (Cornus florida) V
Tupelo, Ebony Black Gum (Nyssa sylvatica var. sylvatica) V
Persimmon (Diospyros virginiana) O
Ash White Ash (Fraxinus americana) M
Blue Ash (Fraxinus quadrangualta) S, B
Invasive/Non-Native Mimosa/Silk Tree (Albizia julibrissin) V
Tree of Heaven (Ailanthus altissima) V

Last updated: August 14, 2021

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