Coefficient of Conservatism:
Coefficient of Wetness:
SOUR-GUM, BLACK-GUM, PEPPERIDGE
A. A. Reznicek
Dry or usually moist forests or wet depressions in forests, borders of swamps (even with tamarack), shores, typically in acid, often sandy, soils.
A distinctive tree in silhouette, with often drooping branches becoming very crooked and twiggy toward their ends. The shining, entire leaves are alternate (but crowded when at ends of shoots), otherwise rather like dogwood leaves, and turn bright red in the fall, at least in part (for they tend to retain patches of green). Leaves on seedlings may be coarsely toothed. The petioles and base of the midrib beneath are usually ± pilose. The flowers, crowded at the ends of long peduncles, are often unisexual, the plants dioecious or polygamo-dioecious.
Nyssa has unusual pith, white but with visible cross-partitions (diaphragmed pith) that is found in Michigan trees otherwise only in Liriodendron.