In the U.S. the range is from the Rocky Mountain states of Montana south to New Mexico eastward as far as Texas and Oklahoma and then up to Missouri, Illinois and Wisconsin. They have lustrous, bright green foliage in summer that changes to brilliant yellow in fall. Rich green, wide, triangular- shaped leaves turn yellow in … Come join me at www.peacockorchard.com . Below: 1st photo - The fertile female catkins develop a number of green 4-chambered seed capsules, each of which can have 28 to 40 seeds. The plains cottonwood is a large, fast-growing, short-lived tree of the Great Plains and eastern border of the Rocky Mountains. Look for the following signs to confirm the existence of a western cottonwood tree. Wyoming designated the plains cottonwood as official state tree in 1947. The Plains cottonwood is the great tree of the American prairies. Cottonwood trees get their name from the fluffy cotton-like seeds produced by the female tree. It is the state tree of Wyoming. Male Catkins: Below 1st photo - the catkin prior to elongation. The Plains Cottonwood is a large native deciduous tree forming a tall trunk, up to 100 feet high and diameters often larger than 4 feet. Lanceleaf Cottonwood Tree; Narrowleaf Cottonwood Tree; Plains Cottonwood Tree; Great Plains Cottonwood Tree; Rio Grande Cottonwood Tree, a deciduous poplar of the willow family; Swamp Cottonwood Tree; Parry's Cottonwood Tree; Cottonwood Tree: Facts, Info on the Cottonwood Trees. Seed: After pollination, the female catkins elongate up to 6 inches in length and the fertilized flowers produce an elliptical seed capsule, green initially, turning brown. He sent many plants to Europe, including many to Linnaeus who considered him the ‘greatest natural botanist is the world'. Read on for more cottonwood tree facts. The crown is open and spreading with slightly drooping stout branches. Plains Cottonwood Facts The plains cottonwood is a large, fast-growing, short-lived tree of the Great Plains and eastern border of the Rocky Mountains. It has 0 leaf glands and winter buds with hair. Catkins are also called 'aments'. Also known as Fremont cottonwood or Rio Grande cottonwood, this tree is commonly found near water bodies of arid regions. No other tree approaches its stature on the grasslands that sweep five hundred miles from the ninety-eighth meridian to the foot of the Rockies. Members of the willow family, cottonwoods are named for the cottonlike mass of hairs surrounding their seeds. Below: 1st photo - is the typical rough and deeply furrowed bark of cottonwood trunks, - 2nd photo - frequently the trough of the furrow is lighter color. Below: Female aments starting to elongate. plains cottonwood tree As a breeze picks up in the night air, leaves from every treetop near and far rustle together to render soft, swishing sounds. (Noncommercial Use Permitted with Attribution), Source | Reference Links | Additional Resources. Below: 1st photo - Plains Cottonwood leaves have long pointed tips and straight to heart-shaped bases, curved (slightly hooked) coarse teeth on the margin and a slender flattened stalk that has 2 glands at the base. Wood is used in commercial production of things such as wooden pallets and paper. Names: The genus Populus is the Latin name for the Poplar. Plains Cottonwood Trees (populus deltoides): the greenish-yellow bark of the young tree becomes rough and dark gray as it gets older. As with most trees, all leaves will be slightly variable in shape and size on the same tree. Two others are reported: One is a native cross - P. X jackii, Jack's Cottonwood, which is usually sterile [The DNR does not track county populations of it]; and the other is the introduced P. alba, White Poplar. Trees need to be about 10 to 15 years of age to produce seed. Cottonwood (Poplar) The cottonwood—also known as the poplar—is a tall tree with a spreading crown, named for its cotton-like seeds. It has leaf tips that are very short pointed, either 0 or 3 to 6 leaf stalk glands, winter buds without hair, and the catkin stalks are longer and not of uniform length. 2nd photo - twigs have slight angles and green-brown resinous buds. The diverse poplar family includes the quaking aspen, which boasts the widest range of any North American tree, and the Plains cottonwood, which was the only tree many early settlers met as they forged westward through America's prairies. Uses: Cottonwood wood is light, soft and weak but has a uniform texture so it is used in plywood, paper pulp, and lumber for uses not requiring bending or compression strength. 2nd photo - in the early spring, in process of elongation. Photo Nov. 10, 2017 near the Rio Grande River at Bernado NM. Planting history generally from 1, 4 & 4a. I'm waiting for leaf fall at the tree at my work so I can take cuttings and put them in the pond. Cottonwood trees (Populus spp.) Images not to scale. The tree in the 2nd & 3rd photos, has a single trunk. Comparisons: There are three subspecies of this tree that somewhat overlap geographically. Black Cottonwood leaves may also have an ovate shape and the leaves of mature trees may show a light rust color on the side facing the ground. Large individuals can reach over 130 ′ in height. A crushed twig has a bitter aspirin taste. The color is red to yellow and each small flower on the catkin has a saucer shape basal disk with 30 to 40 stamens. It is the state tree for Wyoming, Kansas and Nebraska. Below: A leaf comparison of the four Minnesota native species of Populus plus the introduced P. alba. Plant cottonwoods only if your house has a large expanse of outdoor land for maximum effect. They have a basal disk, a 4 chambered ovary and pistil with 2 to 4 flattened stigmata. wislizeni. deltoides. No other tree approaches its stature on the grasslands that sweep five hundred miles from the ninety-eighth meridian to the foot of the Rockies. From left to right: plains cottonwood, narrowleaf cottonwood, and lanceleaf cottonwood leaves on branches About All Cottonwood Trees Cottonwood trees are a common street tree and are the largest native broadleaf trees in Colorado. The Plains cottonwood is the great tree of the American prairies. Leaves are triangular, 3 to 7 inches long and 3 to 5 inches wide, alternate, simple, with long pointed tips and straight to heart-shaped bases and curved (slightly hooked) coarse teeth on the margin. They are related to poplars and aspens. Male catkins (staminate) are in clusters of 2 to 4 at the branch tips. Trees require full sun and are generally shade intolerant. According to the county sign installed in the visitors’ viewing area, the plains cottonwood typically is a quick growing, short-lived tree with a life expectancy of about 90 years. They do REALLY well on creek and pond edges. In 1765 he became “The King’s Botanist” for North America. The leaves are broad, glossy, and light-green in color. Other massive 5 to 6-ft driver bottom specimens are not uncommon. The third subspecies, subsp. Distribution principally from W1, W2 and 28C. Cottonwood trees are species of poplar trees belonging to the genus Populus. The subspecies monilifera is found in North America in the Great Plains region and somewhat eastward, but not into the southern states where the dominant subspecies is subsp. Details Here. Cottonwood trees are also large shade trees and their sprawling branches have a spread of up to 113 ft. (34 m). The Plains Cottonwood tree (Populus sargenti) also known as the Poplar is a tall tree named for its cotton-like seeds. It is located about a mile from Hygiene, Colorado on closed property maintained by Boulder county Parks and Open Space. Other sources by specific reference. Minnesota's champion tree cottonwood measures a whopping 10-ft diameter at breast height. The plains cottonwood is the western subspecies of the Eastern cottonwood (Populus deltoides). United States, ND. There are reports of stands in several states further east but this range excludes the southern states and New England. Deciduous Tree Type: Shade Tree: Tree Habit: Round, Pyramidal, Dense Branching: Mature Size (generic) Notes: Plains Cottonwood is considered indigenous to the Garden area and Susan Wilkins added some young plants in 2011 to enhance the tree canopy in the woodland area. A selection of Plains Cottonwood with a straight central leader and a pyramidal habit that matures to a broad rounded form. In Canada the range is from British Columbia east to Ontario. Lombardy poplar (P. nigra) is a columnar form that is much planted. Both show the open crown. See All State Trees | National Tree. It will tolerate a wide range of soils as long as they are well-drained. The plains cottonwood is a Colorado native tree but, while it grows in our area, it’s considered native to the lower elevations of the state and is typically found in elevations between 3,500 to 6,500 feet. Female catkins (pistillate) appear singly or in opposite pairs, are green and the individual small flowers are stalked. Western Cottonwood Tree Identification. The Plains cottonwood is also the largest broadleaf tree of Colorado, New Mexico, and Wyoming. These large trees can grow to between 50 and 80 ft. (15 – 24 m). The catkin stalks are of uniform length. His work was not complete and was amended by ‘Marshall’ which refers to Humphry Marshall (1722-1801), American Botanist, who published in 1785 - Arboretum Americanum: The American Grove, an Alphabetical Catalogue of Forest Trees and Shrubs, Natives of the American United States. This is why the common name of Plains Cottonwood is preferred. They are shiny green on top, pale green under, and have a long slender, flattened stalk which has 2 round glands on the top side. The largest known Plains Cottonwood tree is more than 300 years old, 36 feet around and 105 feet tall. The buds are large, about 3/4 inch long and covered with several green-brown resinous scales. One of the cultivated male varieties, “Straight Plains” or ‘Jeronimus’ cottonwood keeps a straight main leader, is tolerant of many soil types and conditions, and can make a nice shade tree in landscapes that provide enough room for this tree to mature. The species, deltoides, is from the Greek letter 'Delta' and refers to the delta shape of the leaf. Provided by ND State Soil Conservation Committee. Both male and female catkins have (+ or -) 15 to 40 individual flowers. USDA NRCS ND State Soil Conservation Committee; NDSU Extension and Western Area Power Administration, Bismarck. Some species of cottonwood trees have been known to reach heights of 100 ft. (30 m) or more. It is the big tree on the banks of the mightiest rivers of the great plains, and the on the smallest streams. Here is some detailed information on the cottonwood tree. There are only four species of Populus that are native and commonly found in Minnesota: P. balsamifera, Balsam Poplar; P. deltoides, Plains Cottonwood; P. grandidentata, Bigtooth Aspen; and P. tremuloides, Quaking Aspen. Populus L. – cottonwood Species: Populus deltoides W. Bartram ex Marshall – eastern cottonwood Subspecies: Populus deltoides W. Bartram ex Marshall ssp. But nothing sounds quite like the whisper of a plains cottonwood’s glossy, shimmering leaves sighing in the wind, as if … Identification booklet for most of the flowering forbs and small flowering shrubs of the Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden. monilifera (Aiton) Eckenwalder – plains cottonwood The area that had been accidentally dug up by the excavator had really nicely established cottonwood and aspen on it. ), not the cottonwood tree.] The seeds are very small, 1mm wide by 4 mm long, which is quite remarkable considering that they can become one of the largest trees in North America, up to 100 ft. high with massive trunks over 5 … The root system is wide and branching and deeply penetrating to find moisture. North Dakota tree handbook. Above: Various tree shapes of Cottonwood. References: Plant characteristics are generally from sources 1A, 32, W2, W3, W7 & W8 plus others as specifically applied. Flowers: Cottonwood is dioecious, that is male and female flowers occur on separate trees. It has long been prized in the Great Plains where it …