Princeton American Elm

Common Name : Princeton American Elm

Scientific Name : Ulmus americana ‘Princeton’

Zone : 3 to 9

Height : 50 to 70 feet

Width : 30 to 50 feet

Culture :

Grow in average, medium moisture, well-drained soils in full sun. Tolerant of light shade. Prefers rich, moist loams. Adapts to both wet and dry sites. Generally tolerant of urban conditions. Regular pruning and spraying is advisable because of Dutch elm disease threat.

Description : 

American elm is a vase-shaped, medium to large, deciduous tree that typically grows to 60-80’ tall with a broad-rounded crown. It is native to eastern and central North America. Although once widely planted in the United States as street and lawn trees, American elms have now been so decimated by Dutch elm disease that species trees are no longer considered to be viable selections for landscapes. ‘Princeton’ reportedly has excellent resistance to Dutch elm disease and is currently being planted. It was developed by Princeton Nurseries in 1922, which was about 10 years prior to the time when the Dutch elm fungal infection first came to the U. S. ‘Princeton’ typically grows to 50-70′ tall. Non-showy, small green flowers appear in spring before the foliage emerges. Flowers give way to single-seeded, wafer-like samaras (each tiny seed is surrounded by a flattened oval-rounded papery wing). Seeds mature in April-May as the leaves reach full size. Rough-textured, ovate-elliptic, dark green leaves (to 6” long) have toothed margins and asymetrical bases. Leaves typically turn yellow in fall.

Problem :

‘Princeton’ has reported excelent resistance to Dutch elm disease. It is susceptible to phloem necrosis which is a viral disease that attacks the food-conducting tissue of the tree, usually resulting in a loosening of the bark, wilting, defoliation and death. It is also susceptible to wetwood which is a bacterial disease that results in wilting and dieback. Various wilts, rots, cankers and leaf spots may also occur. Insect visitors include borers, leaf miner, beetles, mealy bugs, caterpillars and scale.

Garden Uses:

May be used as a lawn, shade or street tree.