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Flaigg, Norman G.
Taxodium mucronatum Ten.
Montezuma bald cypress, Montezuma cypress, Mexican cypress, Ahuehuete, Sabino
USDA Symbol: tamu
USDA Native Status: L48 (N)
Large, needle-leaf, aquatic tree with tall, straight trunk and broad crown of spreading branches and drooping twigs, evergreen or nearly so. Trunk enlarged at base with ridges above; sometimes small knees project from submerged roots.
The national tree of Mexico, Montezuma Baldcypress is closely related to the Baldcypress of the southeastern United States, T. distichum (which also occurs in Mexico), but is usually evergreen and is not hardy in cold climates. The Big Tree of Tule, near Oaxaca, Mexico, is a famous giant. Apparently formed by the fusion of 3 trees, it has a trunk circumference of 112 ft (34 m) and a height of 141 ft (43 m). The majestic veterans in Chapultepec Park, Mexico City, are taller, reaching 165 (50 m), and are among the oldest cultivated trees in the New World, perhaps exceeding 600 years.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Tree Leaf Retention: Evergreen Leaf Complexity: Simple Size Notes:
36-72 ft. Flower:
Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Time: Feb , Mar
DistributionUSA: TX Native Distribution:
Extreme S. Texas in Cameron and Hidalgo counties, near sea level; also Mexico. Native Habitat:
Swamps, Stream, river banks
Growing ConditionsWater Use: High
Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Wet
Soil Description: Sandy, Sandy Loam, Medium Loam, Clay Loam, Clay
Conditions Comments: Faster growing than Bald Cypress in good conditions and semi-deciduous in winter. Could suffer winter damage in Central Texas northward. A cone bearing plant, Montezuma Cypress cones open in February and seeds ripen in October after flowering in March or April. Seeds are released upon cone ripening, and germinate as soon as moisture conditions permit. There is a weeping form.
BenefitUse Ornamental: Fall conspicuous, Attractive, Long-living
Use Wildlife: Nesting site, Cover, Substrate-insectivorous birds, Seeds-Small mammals
Interesting Foliage: yes
From the National Suppliers Directory
According to the inventory provided by Associate Suppliers, this plant is available at the following locations:
Hill Country Natives
- Leander, TX
Record Last Modified: 2011-01-27
Research By: TWC Staff