Celtis laevigata

Accession Count: 34
Common Name: netleaf hackberry, canyon hackberry
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Family Name: Cannabaceae
Botanical Name: Celtis laevigata
Botanical Synonyms: Celtis reticulata, Celtis douglasii & Celtis occidentalis
Sub Species:
Variety: reticulata

The netleaf hackberry is a deciduous tree with an alternate, deltoid leaf arrangement. The leaves are about 1 to 3 inches long with a smooth margin.

Compound: Cel lae ret
Geographic Origin: Mountain Southwest
Ecozone Origin: Nearctic
Biome Origin:
Natural History: This tree is cultivated in and native to the United States.  The primary location of this tree is in the Western United States, but it grows as far east as Louisiana.  This plant species grows in rough coarse soils, and is very resistant to drought conditions (1).

The netleaf hackberry requires little care, but may require high water use to maintain appearance.
Cultivation Notes: The Netleaf Hackberry is pretty resilient under harsh conditions that may cause stress or death in other plants.  It does not require very fertile soil, which is one reason it thrives in the desert (2).  Netleaf Hackberry needs a minimum of twelve inches of soil depth for roots and can survive with a minimum of seven inches of rain per year (2).

Both humans and animals utilize this plant.  Native American tribes have eaten the berries from this tree, both fresh and dried (3).  Some tribes would roast the berries over a fires, while others would make them into jellies and dried cakes (3).  Parts of the tree have been used by native peoples as a source of medicine, fiber, and dye (3).  The Papago tribe utilized the bark of the Netleaf Hackberry to craft sandals.  The fruits are also a food source for many birds and small mammals.

Height: 20 - 50 feet
Width: 20 - 50 feet
Growth Rate: Moderate Growing
Grow Season: Summer
Flower Season: Spring
Color: Green
Spread: Spreading
Allergen: Allergenic
Invasive: Invasive
Toxicity: Benign
Hardy: Tender
Water Use: Moderate Water Use


1. "Celtis laevigata Willd. var. reticulata (Torr.) L.D. Benson netleaf hackberry." Natural Resources Conservation Service. United States Department of Agricuture. Web. 9 Dec 2013.

2. "Characerteristics." Natural Resources Conservation Service. United States Department of Agricuture. Web. 9 Dec 2013.

3. "Foods Indigenous to the Western Hemisphere." American Indian Health and Diet Project. N.p.. Web. 9 Dec 2013.
4. Duffield, Mary Rose., and Warren D. Jones. Plants For Dry Climates - How To Select, Grow And Enjoy. Lane Publishing Company, 1992.


Celtis laevigata