Know Your Trees: Honey Locust

This week for Know Your Trees, GM is talking about the honey locust.

Unlike last week’s poplars, honey locusts definitely appear along sidewalks in Georgetown. They are really fast growers and can turn a sun-baked sidewalk into a sun-dabbled sidewalk fairly quickly.

They are relatively easy to recognize due to their leaf and branch structure. The leaves a medium sized and oval-shaped. But what distinguishes them is how the leaves grow off the thin branches like this:

It’s almost like a wisteria branches. The growth rate is wisteria-esque too. A tree that is planted at only 6 feet could be as tall as 25 feet in five years. Ultimately they can grow as tall as 70 feet.

Another feature to look for are the leathery legume-like seed pods:

The pulp inside the pods is sweet, and that is the reason the tree is called a honey locust. But don’t get it mixed up with a black locust, whose seed pods are toxic. Better just buy actual honey if you want that taste…

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