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Products > Taxodium mucronatum
Taxodium mucronatum - Montezuma Cypress

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Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Tree
Family: Cupressaceae (incl. Taxodiaceae) (Cypresses)
Origin: Mexico (North America)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: NA
Bloomtime: Not Significant
Synonyms: [Taxodium huegelii]
Height: 60-80 feet
Width: 20-40 feet
Exposure: Full Sun
Summer Dry: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 0-10 F
Taxodium mucronatum (Montezuma Cypress) - This beautiful Mexican native can grow in dry soils, however it will grow slower, or in well-watered areas like lawns. Montezuma cypress has a broad, spreading crown with strong, horizontal branches and delicate, weeping branchlets with pinnately arranged flattened bright green needles. The bark, often described as shreddy, is a pale tan color. The roots of trees growing in standing water can send up conical projections ("knees") but those that experience periodic drying out, such as those growing along stream courses or in cultivation, are less likely to form these. Plant in full sun and irrigate regularly to occasionally. Widely noted as hardy to around 10F but we have been told that it can actually tolerate temperatures below 0F . Typically planted as a large tree we have also seen this plant kept as a large interesting hedge. This tree is closely related to the deciduous bald cypress (Taxodium distichum) of southeastern United States but even in colder years Montezuma Cypress tends to hold some foliage, though it often turns an orange brown color, and in frost-free years is evergreen. This plant is native to much of Mexico and to the Rio Grande Valley in southern Texas. There are many large specimens of this plant in Santa Barbara (the specimens in Plaza Vera Cruz Neighborhood Park are particularly notable) and Mexico's most famous tree; a giant specimen called the Tule is thought to be more than 2,000 years old with a girth of 165 feet. It has been said that the Tule at Santa Maria del Tule is the world's largest single biomass. This plant has long been in cultivation as Taxodium mucronatum but the current correct name is Taxodium huegelii - we retain the name Taxodium mucronatum until Taxodium huegelii gets broader acceptance.  The information on this page is based on research conducted in our nursery library and from online sources as well as from observations made of this plant as it grows in our nursery, in the nursery's garden and in other gardens that we have visited. We have also incorporated comments received from others and always appreciate getting feedback of any kind from those who have some additional information, particularly if this information is contrary to what we have written or includes additional cultural tips that would aid others in growing  Taxodium mucronatum.