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The Rock Elm U


U. Thonzasi, Sarg.

The rock elm or cork elm chooses dry, gravelly upland and low heavy clay soil, on rocky slopes and river cliffs, from Ontario and New Hampshire westward through northern New York, southern Michigan to Nebraska and Missouri. It is more abundant and of largest size in Ontario and in the southern peninsula of Michigan.

Its leaf is small, thick, and firm, dark green, and turns to brilliant yellow in the autumn. Its flowers and fruits are borne in racemes. At any season, one knows this cork elm by the shaggy bark on its stout limbs that make the tree resemble a bur oak. "Rock elm" and "hickory

elm" are names that refer to the hardness of the wood. The wheelwright counts it the best of all elms. Compact, with interlacing fibres, there are spring, strength, and toughness in this wood which adapt it for bridge timbers, heavy agricultural implements, wheel stocks, sills, and axe handles. The name "cork elm" refers to the corky bark which runs out in winged ridges, even to the twigs.