Nearly 70 species of ash trees are grouped under the Fraxinus genus. These trees are grown for ornamental purposes and for their timber. Some of them produce seasonal flowers that grow in small clusters along with a spring fruit called the samara, 'helicopter,' or 'whirligig.' The following list of features can be used to identify different kinds of ash trees.
White Ash Tree
Its foliage is distinctive with an open spread, clearly visible at the top-end of the tree. This is the largest of all ash tree varieties. Its bark is the largest in the Fraxinus family, with massive girth, gray coloration and interlocking ridges. The foliage changes from dark green during summers to bright yellow or maroon during the fall.
Purple Ash Tree
This is a popular ash suited to both wet and dry conditions. These trees are perennial fruit producers. The tree develops a characteristic pyramidal shape during the initial years, but mature Purple Ashes usually have an oval shape. They can be easily identified in the spring and fall season due the bright-red color of their foliage. The foliage can develop hues of purple or maroon, too.
Green Ash Tree
This tree grows slower than most other ashes. Its foliage exhibits dull and darker shades of yellow in the fall. The stems have a typical velvety appearance. It is named after its leaflets that have a shiny dark-green coloration.
Cimarron Ash Tree
Cimarron ash is one of the few varieties that looks slender. The bark is much thinner and the branches have a distinct, upright stance. This is the most common of ash trees used in landscaping purposes. It is grown for its dark-green foliage that has a glossy appearance, and the shade changes to intense red or orange during the fall season.