Latin: Liquidambar styraciflua
Other common names: redgum, American sweetgum, sapgum, bilsted
Mature Height: 50-150 ft. Trees may live to 400 years.
Soil / Climate: From Connecticut and southern Illinois, to central Florida and northeastern Mexico.The species grows best in moist, acidic loam or clay soil, and tolerates poor drainage.
Notes: Landscape uses are lawn tree or shade tree for larger residences, for fall color, street tree where ample room is provided, parks and campuses. It is recognizable by the combination of its five-pointed star-shaped leaves and its hard, spiked fruits. Sweetgum is used principally for lumber, veneer, plywood, slack cooperage, railroad ties, fuel, and pulpwood. The tree’s gum resin resembles turpentine. The leaves give off a camphor odor when crushed. The fruit of the Sweetgum tree looks like a small spiny ball with a stem; they are also referred to as “gumballs.”
Wildlife: Seeds are eaten by many types of birds.
Stream Farm supplies Sweet Gum trees which are grown as bare root seedlings and transplants and sold both wholesale and retail with no minimum order.
Additional information on Nyssa sylvatica can be found on the link: USDA / NRCS PLANTS Database.