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Ulmus pumila
Ulmus pumila (Siberian Elm)
Ulmaceae (Elm Family)
 

Foothills. Roadsides, fields, lawns. Spring.
Near Yellowjacket Canyon, April 21, 2010.

Ulmus pumila flowers are minute and packed into tight bird-nest clusters.

Each of the two clusters at left is about seven millimeters wide and three millimeters high on last year's stem growth of about two millimeters in diameter.

Numerous clusters are scattered over the latest few feet of growth of most branches of Ulmus pumila. Seed production is, therefore, monumental and since seeds readily germinate in any relatively moist areas (gardens, flower beds, edges of house foundations, and roadsides), this non-native is a dominant tree in both towns and country-side in the Four Corners.

Ulmus pumila
Ulmus pumila (Siberian Elm)
Ulmaceae (Elm Family)
 

Foothills. Roadsides, fields, lawns. Spring.
Near Yellowjacket Canyon, April 20, 2010.

The styles are green, split into two parts, and fringed.  Anthers are purple.  The flowers are enclosed in papery tan coverings with red tops. About a dozen of these are bundled in one cluster in the photograph at left.

Ulmus pumila    Ulmus pumila
Ulmus pumila (Siberian Elm)
Ulmaceae (Elm Family)
 

Foothills. Roadsides, fields, lawns. Spring.
Near Yellowjacket Canyon, April 20, 2010.

Ulmus pumila   Ulmus pumila
Ulmus pumila (Siberian Elm)
Ulmaceae (Elm Family)
 

Foothills. Roadsides, fields, lawns. Spring.
Near Yellowjacket Canyon, April 21, 2010.

Ulmus pumila

Ulmus pumila

Ulmus pumila

Ulmus pumila myriad of seeds on ground
Ulmus pumila (Siberian Elm)
Ulmaceae (Elm Family)
 

Foothills. Roadsides, fields, lawns. Spring.
Above: River Trail, Durango, April 27, 2016.
Left: Near Yellowjacket Canyon, June 7, 2010.

Above: Mature and immature Ulmus pumila trees appear to be covered in early spring green leaves, but the green actually belongs to tens of thousands of ripening seeds and the wings that surround them.

 

Ulmus pumila seedsAs the leaves begin to show (about six weeks after flowers are fertilized), seeds ripen and float to the ground in massive numbers.  If seeds fall in dry areas (such as the ground in the photograph at far left) they have little chance of germinating, but if they fall in moist areas, they can sprout and grow quickly.