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Populus trichocarpa

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Populus trichocarpa

Black Cottonwood

Community: Riparian

Brief Description

Giant river bottom tree lends stability to banks and shades watercourses.

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  • Extremely Fast-Growing
  • Provides Cooling Shade
  • Reduces Erosion
  • Prefers Wetter Areas

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Availability: Temporarily sold out. New inventory is made available in the spring and fall of each year.

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Plant Description and Details

Tall and fast-growing, Black Cottonwood is widely spread in the intermountain region. The life cycle takes it from a tiny seed floating in light cotton fluff up to a maximum of 100 feet tall. It has an incredible growth rate. Within2 decades, the tree will have grown up to about 60 ft. When young, it has an upright conical form with smooth bark, becoming more flat-topped with age and having downward turning branches and deeply-grooved, thick bark.

Common Names Black Cottonwood
Community Riparian
Drought Tolerant No
Native Range Riverbanks, canyons, valleys, low-lying areas, throughout intermountain west.
Native States CA, ID, MT, NV, OR, UT, WA, WY
Hardiness Down to Zone 4
Exposure Sun
Placement Bank stabilization, low-lying flood plains, windbreaks. Releases cotton late May - early June.
Mature Height 20+ ft.
Mature Width 30 ft.
Group Spacing 15-25 ft.
Establishment Tips Water at planting and 2-3 times deeply the first summer.
Plants Symbol POTR2
Family Name Salicaceae
Lewis & Clark Yes

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