Audubon® Pignut Hickory
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Pignut Hickory was so named because someone determined that its nuts were only fit for pigs (the nuts are often bitter, but sometimes they are sweet). Birds, squirrels, and chipmunks seem to like them. The foliage also plays host to a vast array of insect species, which songbirds relish. When you also learn that Pignut Hickory has a tall, graceful habit and radiant golden fall color, you’ll realize that this is one very fine tree indeed!
May Benefit & Attract: cardinals & grosbeaks, wrens, woodpeckers, sparrows, thrushes, orioles, waxwings, nuthatches, finches, mockingbirds & thrashers, crows & jays, vireos
Take Birds Under Your Wing
New! Introducing our bird-friendly collection of Audubon® Native Plants & Trees
- Better for Birds, 100% Neonic-Free
- Not Available in non-native regions, states or counties (see Native Regions map)
Bower & Branch is proud to grow Audubon® Native Plants for Birds in partnership with the National Audubon Society to help birds and other wildlife thrive.
- The National Audubon Society protects birds and the places they need, today and tomorrow
- This bird-friendly native plant provides food and shelter for local and migrating birds and other wildlife
- Your purchase and planting of this native flora directly supports Audubon’s conservation mission and impact
- Learn how you can help birds in your home and community through Audubon’s Plants for Birds program
- Audubon Native Plants & Trees are free of neonicotinoids and exclusively grown by Bower & Branch
Audubon® is a licensed and registered trademark of the National Audubon Society. All rights reserved.
Size AA (12-18" tall) container grown
- Hardiness Zone: 4-9
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Pignut Hickory is a wide-ranging native tree, present all over the eastern U.S., from Maine to Minnesota and south to Texas and Florida. It’s often found on drier, hillier sies than other Hickories, and it grows very slowly in those conditions. This slow growth makes for extremely hard wood. Pignut Hickory wood is stronger than steel but more flexible; settlers used it for implements that would receive a lot of stress—ax handles, wagon wheel hubs, yokes, weaving loom parts. You’ll appreciate its strength in its resistance to ice and snow loads. Hickory rarely loses limbs in storms!
Pignut Hickory is host to an assortment of really weird and wonderful insect species. If you’re lucky, your tree may attract the breathtaking pale green luna moth or even the gigantic royal walnut moth. Those funny “walking stick” insects also feed on Hickory.
How to Grow
Pignut Hickory is sensitive to root disturbance, so plant it in an open space where it will never be in the path of construction projects. This tree does drop leaves and nuts, so you’ll want to keep it away from pools, patios, and sidewalks anyway. Full sun is a must, and average to rich, well-drained soil will support the best growth, which will never be fast. Water regularly during the establishment period. Hickories look especially handsome in groves. Plant a grouping in a semi-wild space on your property, and you’ll create a natural, self-sustaining scene that will get more beautiful with each passing year.
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