American Tulip Tree

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Liriodendron tulipifera, is the scientific name given to the American Tulip Tree, also called the Yellow Poplar or Tulip Poplar. It is native to Southern Ontario and eastern North America and can be fond in east Illinois, central Florida and Louisiana. It is a fast growing tree, and doesn�t face the typical problems most fast growing species of trees do such as short lifespan and weak wood strength.

Appearance

American Tulip Tree is one of the largest trees that are native to the eastern United States and can reach heights of 190 feet, and have a trunk diameter of 10 feet. It grows fairly rapidly, with the crown of the tree forming a conical shape. It has simple, alternate leaves that are pinnately veined. They are four lobed and either heart shaped or somewhat wedge-shaped at the base.

Flowers and fruits

The flowers of this tree are yellow, pale green or sometimes, but rarely, white. They have an orange band on the petals which makes it easy to distinguish this tree. The flowers are borne on short peduncles and are cup-shaped and erect. The bud is covered by a sheath made of two triangular bracts which fall away when the flower blossoms. The flowers begin to bloom in April. Trees that are found at their northern limit of cultivation flower in June. The fruit produced is a light brown, narrow cone. It is formed by several samara-like carpels that fall off, leaving the axis to persist through winter.

Cultivation

The American Tulip Tree is usually considered to be shade tolerant and is the most common tree that appears in the very first stage of forest succession. For this reason it is used in reforestation and landscaping projects as a pioneer plant. All young tulip trees as well as more mature trees do not tolerate being inundated with water for long periods of time. There are some species of this tree that can be found growing in costal plain swamps that are clearly more flood-tolerant than the rest of the species. Some of these trees can retain their leaves all year as evergreen trees unless a very harsh frost strikes, in which case they will turn deciduous and shed their leaves.

Uses

This tree is often used as a shade tree. Apart from that, it is of great important in the manufacture of honey. It is one of the more important honey plants in the United States, giving a dark red, strong honey which is used as table honey but also preferred by bakers.

It is also used commonly because it is cheap, stable and easy to work. It is the ideal choice of wood when it comes to the manufacture of organs, because it can handle a smooth, fine, precisely-cut finish and effectively seals against valves and pipes. It is also used often for side cupboards.
It is used for the siding and panels of carriages, coffin boxes, wooden ware, cabinetry, the interior finish of houses, and pattern timber. When the better qualities of white pine are unavailable, this wood has served as the best substitute, especially when extremely wide boards are needed.

Gardening Articles: http://organicgardenarticles.com/

Author: Tammy Sons
www.tnnursery.net

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