Ulmus rubra

red elm, slippery elm


wildlife plant  


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Use this link to get more info about this plant from the USF Institute for Systematic Botany

Plant Specifics

Form: tree
Life Span: long-lived perennial
Size: Height: 40-60 ft    Width: 30-50 ft
Phenology: deciduous
Noted for: Fall color, interesting foliage


Recommended Uses: Medium shade tree for informal settings. Somewhat coarse in texture.
Considerations: Susceptible the Dutch elm disease.
Propagation: Stem-tip cuttings. Seed.
Availability: Native nurseries
Light: light requirement  
Moisture Tolerance:
Salt Tolerance: Not salt tolerant
Soil or other substrate: Sand, clay, loam
Soil pH Range: Adaptable


wildlife plant  
Seeds used by songbirds when little else is available. Used for nesting. Larval host for question mark butterfy (Polygonia interrogationis).
Native Habitats: Rich mesic to dry mesic forests, wooded bluffs, calcareous soils.

Distribution and Planting Zones

Natural Range in Florida

USDA Zones:

USDA zones are based on minimum winter temperatures

Suitable to grow in:


The edible inner bark is dried and then moistened for use as a cough medicine or as a poultice.

Other Comments:

This tree is subject to Dutch elm disease. While not as much a problem in Florida as further north, it should be a concern for anyone planning to use this species in a landscape setting.