About This Plant

The bark of Taxodium distichum, commonly known as Swamp Cypress or Bald Cypress, is a distinctive feature of this deciduous coniferous tree. The bark is fibrous, reddish-brown to greyish-brown in colour, and exfoliates in thin strips, giving the trunk a unique and textured appearance. As the tree ages, the bark becomes more deeply furrowed. In terms of height, Taxodium distichum is a large tree that can reach impressive dimensions. Mature specimens often grow to heights of 50 to 70 feet (15 to 21 meters), and exceptionally tall individuals may surpass 100 feet (30 meters). The tree has a straight and tall trunk with a conical to broadly pyramidal crown.

The Story

Leaf

The leaves of Taxodium distichum are deciduous and display distinctive characteristics. These needle-like leaves are linear and arranged in a flat, feather-like pattern along the branches. Each leaf is typically about 1/2 to 3/4 inch long (1.3 to 1.9 cm) and appears in two rows, giving the tree its “distichum” designation. The leaves emerge bright green in spring, transition to a rich green hue during the growing season and in autumn they turn a coppery or russet colour before eventually shedding in preparation for winter.

Produce

Swamp cypress produces small, woody cones as its fruit. These cones are typically globular and range in size from about 1 to 2 centimetres in diameter. Each cone is composed of scales that protect the seeds within. The cones of the swamp cypress are often light brown in colour and can be found attached to the branches of the tree.
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