Fraxinus excelsior

Common Ash


The common Ash. Fast growing and hardy, with lance-shaped dark green leaves. Height after 10 years over 6m. Read more


  • Deciduous
  • L Size: Large
  • Leaf colour: Green
  • Growth rate: Fast
  • Open space planting
  • Chalk tolerant
  • Clay tolerant
  • Can be hard pruned
  • Tolerates coastal sites
  • Autumn colour
Full Description

Description: Fraxinus excelsior, also known as Common Ash is a tree with a light crown, oval-shaped with steeply angled branches but regular branched on all sides. Develops a smooth, pale grey bark. It's flowers open on bare branches in April slongside green leaves which don't break from their buds until at least a month later. The bunches of winged fruits dangle from the branches in late summerthrough until early autumn. Widely used for timber producing wood and is often made into sporting equipment such as tennis racquets, hockey sticks and cricket stumps as well as walking sticks.

History: Native to Europe and western Asia. Received the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit. In Scandinavian mythology, the tree of the world was an ash called Yggdrasil. It was said that its roots reached down into hell while its crown touched the heavens, its huge trunk connecting the two. Odin, considered to be the greatest of the gods, was said to have carved the first man from its wood.

Fraxinus Growing Tips: The Ash are mostly fast growing and tolerant of most soils and sites. They are good on chalk, are naturally shallow rooted, and will withstand shade while young. Ideal for coppice pruning to enhance their variety of striking foliage and are one of the most useful for burning logs.

Height and Spread (after 20 years): 30m x 20m

Some FAQs

Tree Care

Your tree will have been pruned prior to despatch so there should be no need to prune straight away. The only exception is a bare root maiden which will not have been pruned. Some varieties will benefit from being pruned later – please see the variety specific information.

We would advise watering your tree when planting and then regularly during the first summer in the ground. Thereafter the level of watering will depend on the soil and weather conditions. It is best to not let young trees dry out.

A free booklet with simple instructions will also be included with your order.

You can also find more information in the ‘Advice’ section of our website. Click here for ‘How to Plant a Container Tree’ and here for ‘How to Plant a Bare Root Tree’.

Trees should always be planted as soon as possible. The only exception would be bare root trees if the soil is very frozen or waterlogged, in which case heel the trees in until the ground is ready. Bare root trees must be planted before new growth appears in spring, this is usually in March.

If your tree is to be kept in a container, then we’d advise repotting into a larger container as soon as possible. Please check to see whether the tree is suitable for a pot before purchasing.


Yes, you can collect the trees from the nursery. Please select the ‘Collect’ option when placing the order. We will email you as soon as your order is ready for collection, we will then need at least two working days to prepare your order.

The delivery charge is calculated according to the number of boxes needed to send the trees. One container grown tree will need one box; bare root trees vary but we can usually get about three in a box. The total delivery cost will be shown when you place the order.

We currently do not deliver to any addresses outside of mainland Great Britain.

We will notify you by email when your order has been despatched. It will usually be delivered within three days from notification.

Our boxes are 2 metres tall and 30cm square.

We are unable to offer a scheduled delivery service as we cannot guarantee an exact delivery date. We can aim for a specific week if you let us know.

Our courier company will leave the package in the safest place if there is no one there, so there is no need to sign for the delivery.

Container grown trees are available from August and bare root trees are available from November. We always aim to deliver your order as soon as every item is ready for despatch.

If the whole order is ready when purchased, it usually takes between 5 and 10 working days to arrive.

See below for a guide on when bare root trees are usually ready for despatch.

Early November – Two year old plums, cherries, apples and then pears.
Late November – One year maiden plums, cherries, apples and then pears.
Late November/Early December – Ornamental prunus, sorbus, thorns, malus and then pyrus. 

This is an estimate as the lifting of bare root trees is very weather dependent.


If you are unhappy with your tree when it arrives, please email within five working days and we will get back to you as soon as possible.