Elm trees are widespread throughout the United States. They're valued for their wood and their shade; plus, the fruit they drop feeds wildlife. Between 1930 and 1980, however, about 100 million elm trees died from a fungus called Dutch elm disease. Happily, the tree has made a comeback as of the late 1990s. Elms like moist areas, and will follow rivers to grow where many other trees will not. As with other allergenic plants, the elm produces flowers and fruit, which release pollen into the air.
- Appearance: Elms have a characteristic vase shape. The trunk splits on the top into large branches, and the smaller offshoot branches give the elm a "weeping" shape. Elm leaves are pointed with jagged edges.
- Peak time: Elms flower in the early spring. The flat fruit ripens and falls in late spring to release a seed.
- Location: You'll find elms all over the eastern and midwestern United States.