At Native Forest Nursery we grow bare root seedlings and #3 container trees. Our container trees are grown in a #3 air pruned pot. This root making container eliminates nearly all potential for root wrapping. This allows for an excellent root structure and delivers an extremely healthy tree. The bare root seedlings at our nursery are grown in a sandy loam soil with high organic matter content, which provides an extremely healthy environment for our seedlings. Our bare root liners and seedlings are hand lifted, packaged, and kept in cold storage until you are ready to plant. Conservation uses for our products include reclamation, mitigation, reforestation, restoration, wildlife habitat improvement and wetland uses. Horticultural uses for our products include field liners, container liners, landscape plantings, budding stock, grafting stock and ornamental uses.

Family: Fagaceae
Latin Name: Castanea dentata
Foliage: Dark green
Fall Foliage: Golden to yellow
Bloom: Yellowish-white
Bloom Time: June
Shape: Broad and rounded
Bark: Gray brown and furrowed
Sun: Full sun
Zone: Zone 5 to Zone 8
Size: 50 to 75 feet
Spread: 50 to 75 feet
Care: Medium, well drained soil

Belonging to the Fagaceae (beech) family, the Castanea Dentata—or American Chestnut—is a massive deciduous tree that is native to the eastern states. Its broad and rounded peak can reach up to 50-75 ft. with a respective spread. It thrives given access to full sunlight and prefers medium well-drained soils, having a 5-8 hardiness zone rating. As the nation’s pioneering forefathers had discovered, the American Chestnut’s timber is a valuable hardwood, bold-grained and very workable, and today is used to create anything from furniture and fences to pianos and barns.

The American Chestnut is most easily identified by the wide-spaced saw-teeth pattern of its dark green leaves, which are usually shorter and broader than its cousin, the Sweet Chestnut. Its yellow-white flowers bloom in June, this pale color scheme somewhat echoed by the tree’s lovely golden-yellow autumn foliage. The American Chestnut is also a prolific bearer of nuts—a mature tree can produce as many as 6,000—enclosing them in clusters of three within velvety green burrs that burst open and fall after the autumn’s first frost. Unsurprisingly, the species serves as a habitat and food provider for many types of wildlife, including white-tailed deer, black bears, wild turkeys, and passenger pigeons. While the tree’s bark may seem an unremarkable furrowed gray-brown, the American Chestnut’s leaves are rich with potassium, magnesium, nitrogen, and phosphorous, contributing to richer forest undergrowth and healthy soils that help with the growth of other organisms.

Before the 1900s, the American Chestnut reigned as the predominant tree species in the United States’ eastern forests. More than a century later, after suffering near-extinction by a merciless chestnut blight, the American Chestnut is making a commendable comeback. Very few ancient specimens of the tree exist, though many shoots of former live trees do remain; near West Salem, Wisconsin, there about 2,500 chestnuts that are direct descendants of less than a dozen trees planted in the late 1800s by American settler Martin Hicks.

Native Forest Nursery Photos:

Mature Tree Photos: