Common Name: bald cypress, swamp cypress
Origin/Ecology: Native to south-eastern United States.
Habit: Slender and conical in youth, becoming flat-topped in old age.
Leaves: on deciduous shoots, needle-like, 15-20 mm long, flattened, soft, short-pointed, midvein prominent, upper surface yellowish-green, whitened beneath. Fall colour is usually orange to rusty brown.
Leaf Arrangement: appearing to be 2-ranked; falling attached to the shoot. On major shoots, shorter, spreading, spirally arranged; falling individually.
Flowers and Fruit: Non-flowering. Strobili mature in 12 months, produced in late fall with pollination in early winter. Seed cones globular, 15-35 mm in diamater, brownish-purple, solitary or in small clusters, on the ends of previous year’s twigs.
Water Use: Not drought tolerant.
Soil: Medium to wet, moisture retentive but reasonably well-drained soils. Prefers moist, acidic, sandy soils, but tolerates a wide range of soil conditions ranging from somewhat dry soils to wet soils in standing water.
Exposure: Full sun.
Landscape Uses: Used as a shade tree.
Limitations: No serious insect or disease problems. Chlorosis often occurs in alkaline soils. Bag worms, gall mites and spider mites are occasional insect pests and twig blight is an occasional disease pest.
Other Features: Trunks are buttressed (flared or fluted) at the base, and when growing in water, often develop distinctive, knobby root growths (“knees”) which protrude above the water surface around the tree. Can survive catastrophic weather events due to high stability.