SCIENTIFIC NAME: Nyssa sylvatica

COMMON NAME: black gum, black tupelo

LEAVES: Thicker and smaller than Nyssa ogeche and Nyssa aquatica. Has an entire leaf margin that is revolute with a short petiole. Veins are somewhat arcuate and appressed. Variety that has larger leaves is biflora. Excellent red fall color.

FLOWERS: Dioecious.

FRUIT: Female trees have purple drupes about 1/4" in diameter.

BARK: Scaly plates. Looks like an alligator's back.

OTHER: Grows 60' to 80' tall. Not a wide growing tree usually only 20' to 30' wide. Native to low, moist sites. Limbs are stiff, twisted, short, and arthritic looking. Early and good red fall color. Not common in the trade. Leave on the site. Native to low/moist sites, but will grow on intermediate sites. Tap rooted.