Southeastern Growers

A true gentle giant, the Liriodendron Tulipifera, or the American Tulip tree is one of the most awe-inspiring trees native to the United States. Part of the larger Liriodendron genus that is characterized by large size, deciduous nature, and flowering abilities, the Tulip tree blooms fragrant yellow flowers that resemble tulips. The tree is a beloved emblem of the eastern United States, serving as the state tree of Kentucky, Indiana, and Tennessee according to the Arbor Day Foundation. If you’re looking for a hardy tree that is largely resistant to pests and insects, look no further. The Liriodendron Tulipifera will almost surely become the staple piece and favorite of your yard and garden.

The Tulip Tree is a large deciduous tree that is native to the eastern portion of the United States. It usually can grow between sixty to ninety feet tall, however there are instances where trees have grown up to 150 feet according to the Missouri Botanical Garden. Trunks of already matured Tulip trees can measure four to six feet in diameter, rising in a straight-column-like fashion with little to no branches on its lower trunk.

Leaves are four-lobed and bright green, distinct from other competing tree giants like oaks and maples. Even more known for its flowers, the Tulip tree produces flowers 3-10 centimeters in diameter. The flowers are a bright yellow and orange, and produce pleasant cucumber-like fragrances.


The Liriodendron Tulipifera loves sunlight. Because of this, they are relatively quick growers, growing up to two feet every year. Tulip trees also enjoy moist soil types, despite the tree’s high drought tolerance. These trees grow well in acidic, moist, sandy, well-drained clay soils, allowing it to grow pretty regularly throughout the eastern United States, but not in the west!

It also has a great deal of wildlife value, as animals love this tree. During the spring its flowers provide sweet nectar for hummingbirds, while its seeds provide food for both birds and mammals. Some animals you’ll see surrounding your Tulip Tree include finches, cardinals, quail, squirrels, and rabbits. Back in the day, these trees were used widely for lumber and construction purposes, the American Tulip Tree is  used more for shading and ornamental purposes today.

If you decide on planting a Tulip tree, this gentle giant will almost certainly become a wonderful addition to your yard. If you liked this post and would like to read more on tree varieties, check out our twitter @SEGrowers.

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