Forest Operations

Average and Maximum Lifespan of Virginia Trees

Tree Name

Scientific Name

Average
Lifespan

Maximum
Lifespan

Ash, Green Fraxinus pennsylvanicum 120 175
Ash, White Fraxinus americana 260 300
Basswood Tilia americana 100 140
Beech American Fagus grandifolia 300 400
Birch, Gray Betula populifolia 50 ?
Birch, Paper Betula papyrifera 100 140
Birch, Sweet Betula lenta 150 250
Birch, Yellow Betula alleghaniensis 150 300
Bitternut Carya cordiformis 175 200
Boxelder Acer negundo 75 100
Catalpa Catalpa speciosa 100 ?
Cedar, Eastern red Juniperus virginiana 150 300
Cherry, Black Prunus serotina 100 250
Chestnut, American Castanea dentata 100 300
Cucumbertree Magnolia acuminata 80 250
Cypress, Bald Taxodium distichum 600 1800
Dogwood, Flowering Cornus florida 125 ?
Elm, American Ulmus americana 175 300
Elm, Slippery Ulmus rubra 200 300
Hackberry Celtis occidentalis 150 200
Hemlock, Eastern Tsuga canadensis 450 800
Hickory, Mockernut Carya tomentosa 200 300
Hickory, Pignut Carya glabra 200 300
Hickory, Shagbark Carya ovata 250 300
Holly, American Ilex opaca 100 150
Locust, Black Robinia pseudoacacia 60 100
Honeylocust, Gleditsia triacanthos 120 ?
Magnolia, Southern Magnolia grandiflora 80 120
Maple, Red Acer rubrum 130 300
Maple, Silver Acer saccarinum 100 125
Maple, Sugar Acer saccharum 300 400
Mulberry, Red Morus rubra 125 ?
Oak, Basket Quercus michauxii 100 200
Oak, Black Quercus velutina 100 225
Oak, Blackjack Quercus marilandica 100 ?
Oak, Chestnut Quercus prinus 300 400
Oak, Live Quercus virginiana 200 300
Oak, Northern Red Quercus rubra 200 400
Oak, Overcup Quercus lyrata 300 400
Oak, Pin Quercus palustris 100 150
Oak, Post Quercus stellata 250 450
Oak, Scarlet Quercus coccinea 80 180
Oak, Southern Red Quercus falcata 200 275
Oak, Water Quercus nigra 175 175
Oak, White Quercus alba 300 600
Oak, Willow Quercus phellos ? ?
Osage-orange Maclura pomifera 75 300 +
Pecan Carya illinoensis 300 ?
Persimmon Diospyros virginiana 60 80
Pine, Loblolly Pinus taeda 100 300
Pine, Shortleaf Pinus echinata 200 300
Pine, Table Mountain Pinus pungens 100 200
Pine, Virginia Pinus virginiana 100 200
Pine, White Pinus strobus 200 450
Poplar, Balsam Populus balsamifera 100 150
Poplar, Yellow Liriodendron tulipifera 250 450
Sassafras Sassafras albidum 100 500
Spruce, Blue Picea pungens 150 350
Sweetgum Liquidambar styraciflua 200 300
Tupelo, Black Nyssa sylvatica 250 600
Walnut, Black Juglans nigra 150 250
Willow, Black Salix nigra 70 85

Other Long-lived Trees in North America

Tree Name

Scientific Name

Average
Lifespan

Maximum
Lifespan

Cedar, Alaska Yellow Chamaecyparis nootkatensis 1000 3500
Cedar, Western Red Thuja plicata 1000 1200
Fir, Douglas Pseudotsuga menziesii 750 1200
Redwood Sequoia sempervirens 1250 2200
Sequoia, Giant Sequoia gigantea 2000 3000

Information on this page taken from:

Loehle, Craig. 1987. Tree Life History Strategies. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 18:209-222;

Smith, David William, personal communication.

Database of maximum tree ages for eastern North America