Bald Cypress Trees (Taxodium distichum). The Bald Cypress tree is a swamp type tree and loves water. However, you can make this tree work in the southwest. How? Easy, provide it will plenty of water during the hot summer months especially during the first 4-5 years after initial planting.
It is a slow growing tree but will live about 300 hundred years or more and will reach a height of about 125 ft. tall and about 6-10 ft. wide. The bark provides a nice grayish brown to reddish brown fiber like texture. If you are looking for something different in your southwest landscape… this is it.
Most Cypress trees are evergreen but this one will lose its needles in winter. As the name suggests it will shed its soft needle-like foliage during the winter season thus its name Bald Cypress. However, if you live where it will never get below 32° degrees Fahrenheit you will have a beautiful tree year round.
Its native habitat ranges from southeastern New Jersey to south Florida and west to East Texas. It will also do well in southwest Texas all the way to Oklahoma, and into the wetlands of the along the Mississippi River.
Bald Cypress Trees in the Southwest?
Yes, the tree will also do well in the southwest providing it gets plenty of water during the hot summer seasons. However, around the southwest where rain is scarce, it will stay much shorter and not as wide.
During fall time the foliage will turn a nice burgundy color and as I mentioned before it will lose its leaves in regions where there are freezing temperatures.
Place it where there is full sun. It loves water and using it where water drains is a good idea. The Bald Cypress tree is a good landscaping tree they only problem is finding one at your local nursery stores. They are rare but most retail nurseries will have them available during the early spring months.
Problems with this tree
They are susceptible to needle blight. This blight is a fungus and is remedied if you act quickly. Spray with a tree fungus spray at the first sign of trouble.
Mites will attack this tree. Remove these insects by watering the tree from the top towards the bottom using a good hand-held nozzle spray. Do this about two or three times per week. Eventually, the mites will die and the tree will continue to thrive.
Prevent blight and mites on Bald Cypress Trees by watering and fertilizing often. It works.
USDA Hardiness Zone: 4 – 10
Learn more about The Bald Cypress tree over at Wikipedia.
Paul Guzman – Husband, Father, Grandfather, Gardener, and Webmaster of GuzmansGreenhouse.com