Only two species of Liriodendron
exist in the world today. Fossils are known from Europe
but the only other extant species in this genus is native to China. The tulip
poplar, or yellow poplar, is native to the eastern U.S. including north Florida. This tall
deciduous tree has distinctive four-lobed leaves and large yellow-green and
orange flowers in spring. Historically, yellow poplar was an important timber
in the United States.
The caterpillars of the tiger swallowtail butterfly feed on the leaves of this
See these plants on the northeast side of the Fine Arts Building (bldg. 45) and the Alumni Square.
This cultivar, Arnold’s Fastigiate, was selected for its very narrow crown and smaller maximum size. Reportedly, it grows to sixty feet tall has a maximum spread of fifteen feet. The wild form can grow to over 100 feet tall.
Light: full sun
Water: drought tolerant when established, young trees will benefit from irrigation during droughts
Soil: very adaptable, no special requirements
Tulip poplar is a native tree that grows well in northeast Florida. Wild plants
grow in moist woods. They become drought tolerant when their roots reach ground
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