Adaptation: White ash grows best on deep, well-drained, moist soils with other hardwoods at elevations of about 0-1050 meters. It rarely forms pure stands. It occurs on middle slopes in the Northeast, on slightly elevated ridges in the floodplains of major streams in the coastal plain, and on slopes along major streams in the central states. Primary associates are eastern white pine, northern red oak, white oak, sugar maple, red maple, yellow birch, American beech, black cherry, eastern hemlock, and yellow poplar.
White ash is primarily characteristic of early and intermediate stages of succession. The seedlings are shade tolerant but can also establish in full sun. Mature individuals are shade intolerant – after persisting for a few years in moderately dense shade, trees developing inside closed stands reach the overstory by responding quickly to openings in the canopy.
General: White ash begins producing seed at a minimum age of 20 years. A good seed crop is produced at intervals of 2-3 years, although the males flower heavily each year. To best overcome dormancy, stratify under moist conditions for 30 days at 14/30 C (night/day) then for 60 days at 5 C. A forest floor seed bank may retain viable white ash seeds for 3-4 years. Germination can occur on mineral soil, humus, or leaf litter, and seedlings develop best in partial sun. Mature trees may reach 200 years of age.
White ash resprouts from the root crown after logging or fire. Sprouting ability decreases with age.
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