Tree of the Month: Sycamore

Scientific Name: Platanus occidentalis

The Sycamore, specifically the American Sycamore, is a deciduous tree that is native to Southern Ontario. It’s most easily identified through its bark.

Quick Facts

  • Height: 30 – 40 meters
  • Diameter: 1.5 meters – 2 meters
  • Soil: Moist
  • Found in wetlands, along rivers and streams
  • Need lots of room to grow
  • Can grow in full sun or partial shade
  • Seed pods are 2.5 cm in diameter and hang at the end of single thin stalk

Fun Facts

  • The American Sycamore is a fast growing symmetrical tree with a think canopy that can grow over 1.5 meters per year
  • The bark of the American Sycamore can appear mottled as large thin flakes of bark are continuously falling off.
    • Because of the tree’s growth sped, the bark cannot keep up with the pace the way that other tree species do
  • Larger trunks may be hollow and the tree can form a secondary trunk close to the ground.
  • The Sycamore tree gets its name from the Sycomore Fig Tree, from the Middle East, whose leaves and round seeds it resembles.

For more information about the Sycamore, click here.

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