Nyssa sylvatica – Black Gum – Black Tupelo – Sour Gum – Pepperidge – Tupelo –


Nyssa – Tupelo –

There are about 5 species of fast growing, trees in this genus. They occur from woodland and swampland in South and Eastern Asia and North America. They produce simple, alternate leaves. It bears small, inconspicuous green flowers, held in clusters in early summer followed by small, ovoid vivid, dark purple fruits, about 1″ long. Tupelos are grown for their attractive foliage and brilliant red, crimson, yellow and orange autumn color. They are ideal as specimen tree or in group plantings and are also effective near water.

Grow in fertile, reliably moist but well drained, neutral to acidic soil in sun or partial shade, Plant as small specimens, to 12″ tall, from containers, they are difficult to transplant successfully. They are wind tolerant.

Prone to dieback, wood rot, canker, wood stain, leaf spots, white rot, scale insects, blister mite gall, leaf miners and caterpillars.

N. sylvatica – Black Gum – Black Tupelo – Sour Gum – Pepperidge – This broadly conical to columnar, deciduous tree found from Eastern North America from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico grows 50-70′ feet tall and 30′ feet wide. It has an unusual trunk covered with brownish gray bark, which breaks up into large pieces on mature specimens. It produces smooth edged, ovate to obovate, matte or glossy, dark green leaves, to 6″ long and 1 ½” wide, downy and paler beneath when young, with short, blunt points. Leaves turn vivid orange or red in autumn, and usually few leaves color precociously throughout summer. The flowers, although insignificant, are produced in abundance in spring, the small black fruits ripen in autumn. The lower branches often droop. Thrives in wet marshy conditions.

Zones 5-9