Trees and shrubs ; trunks 1--many. Bark when young dark reddish brown, in maturity light reddish brown to tan or brownish or grayish white, smooth, rather close or readily exfoliating in paper-thin sheets; lenticels pale, horizontal, in maturity dark, horizontally expanded. Twigs without taste and odor of wintergreen, usually covered with short bristly hairs. Leaf blade ovate or rhombic-ovate, margins serrate, apex acute; surfaces abaxially sparsely pubescent to velutinous, especially along major veins and in vein axils, without prominent resinous glands. Fruiting catkins pendulous or subpendulous, cylindric, shattering with fruits in late fall; scales puberulent to glabrous, often ciliate, lobes diverging at middle. Samaras with wings equal to or somewhat broader than body, broadest near summit, extended beyond body apically.
'Flora of North America @ eFloras (2008). Published on the Internet http://www.efloras.org/flora_page.aspx?flora_id=1 [accessed August 2016]' Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.