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Nyssa sylvatica

Nyssa sylvatica Marsh.

Nyssa sylvatica Marsh. var. caroliniana (Poir.) Fernald

Nyssa sylvatica Marsh. var. dilatata Fernald

Nyssa sylvatica Marsh. var. typica Fernald

Black Gum, Black Tupelo, Swamp Tupelo

KingdomPlantaePlants, but not fungi, lichens, or algae
SubkingdomTracheobiontaVascular plants—plants with a “circulatory system” for delivering water and nutrients
DivisionMagnoliophytaFlowering plants, also known as angiosperms
ClassMagnoliopsidaDicotyledons—plants with two initial seed leaves
SubclassAsteridaeA large class that encompasses asters
OrderCornalesIncludes dogwoods, hydrangeas, stickleafs, tupelos, even sillyberries
FamilyNyssaceaeDogwood family, named for Nyssa, tupelo
GenusNyssaA Greek water nymph; tupelo means roughly “swamp-tree”
SpeciessylvaticaA “woodland habitat”

About plant names...

Black gum is native to eastern North America.

Identification: Black gum trees are 30-80' (9.1-24 m) tall and 20-30' (6.1-9.1 m) wide. The trunks are 20-39" (50-100 cm) in diameter. Dark gray bark becomes deeply cracked and scaly in appearance on older trees. Leaves are approximately oval-shaped, wider toward the end of the leaf, 1¾-4½" (5-12 cm) long. They are somewhat to very shiny, dark green, and typically smooth-edged. In the fall, leaves become dark purple or scarlet. Inconspicuous flowers are greenish-white, though they do have the rather unusual distinction of being polygamo-dioecious, in case you are keeping track. (This means that trees have mostly either male or female flowers, but a few of the opposite sex as well, yet another variation in the confusing sexuality of plants.) Fruits are black or blue in color, about ⅜" (1 cm) long.

Online References:

Nyssa sylvatica on Wikipedia

Nyssa sylvatica on hort.net

Nyssa sylvatica on the USDA Forest Service's Fire Effects Information Database

Nyssa sylvatica at the USDA Forest Service's Silvics of North America site

Nyssa sylvatica at the Ohio State University PLANTFacts database

Nyssa sylvatica (Black Gum, Black Tupelo, Swamp Tupelo)

8/14/2010 · George & Jan’s, Chelmsford, MA
≈ 24 × 16" (62 × 41 cm)

Nyssa sylvatica (Black Gum, Black Tupelo, Swamp Tupelo)

10/3/2010 · Tarkill Interpretive Trail, Rte 402, Poconos, Peck’s Pond, PA
≈ 31 × 46" (78 × 117 cm)

Nyssa sylvatica (Black Gum, Black Tupelo, Swamp Tupelo)

5/14/2012 · Acton Arboretum, Acton, MA
≈ 9 × 6" (23 × 15 cm)

Nyssa sylvatica (Black Gum, Black Tupelo, Swamp Tupelo)

8/14/2010 · George & Jan’s, Chelmsford, MA
≈ 21 × 31" (52 × 78 cm)

Nyssa sylvatica (Black Gum, Black Tupelo, Swamp Tupelo)

8/14/2010 · George & Jan’s, Chelmsford, MA
≈ 21 × 31" (52 × 78 cm)

Nyssa sylvatica description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 16 Aug 2013.

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Nyssa sylvatica (Black Gum, Black Tupelo, Swamp Tupelo)

9/14/2010 · Garden in the Woods, Framingham, MA
≈ 6 × 9" (15 × 23 cm)

Nyssa sylvatica (Black Gum, Black Tupelo, Swamp Tupelo)

8/14/2010 · George & Jan’s, Chelmsford, MA
≈ 24 × 16" (62 × 41 cm)

Nyssa sylvatica (Black Gum, Black Tupelo, Swamp Tupelo)

7/7/2017 · By Jacquelyn Boyt

Nyssa sylvatica (Black Gum, Black Tupelo, Swamp Tupelo)

8/14/2010 · George & Jan’s, Chelmsford, MA
≈ 24 × 16" (62 × 41 cm)

Nyssa sylvatica (Black Gum, Black Tupelo, Swamp Tupelo)

10/3/2010 · Tarkill Interpretive Trail, Rte 402, Poconos, Peck’s Pond, PA

Nyssa sylvatica (Black Gum, Black Tupelo, Swamp Tupelo)

9/14/2010 · Garden in the Woods, Framingham, MA
≈ 7 × 4½" (17 × 11 cm)

Range:

About this map...