(Chionanthus virginicus)
The Olive Family (Oleaceae)

Fringetree, also called Grancy Graybeard, is a tall shrub or short tree with opposite, deciduous leaves, drooping white “beard-like” flowers and dark blue drupes.


Damp woods, thickets, bluffs.

Interesting Facts: 

Fringetree is commonly one of the last plants to produce leaves each year. Multiple parts of the tree have been used medicinally, including to treat gallbladder and liver illnesses. It makes a beautiful ornamental tree. It is host to the Rustic Sphinx Moth.

Olive-like clusters of dark blue to black drupes, .75” long.
Fragrant, fringe-like, drooping, creamy-white 4- lobed corollas hang from a 4 – 8” stalk (beard-like) and appear in late spring before the leaves.
Wildlife value: 
Berries and foliage are a food source for many animals, but heavy foraging is very damaging to the plant, limiting it as a long-term food source.
Leaf type: 
Wildlife value: 
Tree dimensions: 

Leaf length: 4.00-8.00 inches
Tree height: 15.00-30.00 feet

Where to find Fringetree on the Louisiana State Arboretum Trails:

TER - Walker Terrace 27.0

Refer to our Live Map to locate this species and its interpretative signage on the trail system.