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Montezuma Cypress

Montezuma Cypress

Montezuma Cypress (Taxodium mucronatumor T. distichum var. mexicana)

Montezuma Cypress
Taxodium mucronatumor T. distichum var. mexicana

(Taks-OH-de-um muh-kron-AH-tum) or
(T. DIS-tik-um meks-sih-KAY-nuh)

Montezuma Bald Cypress or Mexican Cypress


While taxonomists disagree on its classification, this wonderful tree is closely related to T. distichum (bald cypress) and shares most of its outstanding characteristics, yet is distinct
Plant habit Medium to tall tree with an open, spreading habit (Bald cypress is upright and dense)

Landscape use
Plant as a specimen or in a massed group

Average mature size
45-80’ tall x 40-50’ wide

Growth rate
Slow to fast, depending on water availability and soil fertility, Extremely long lived

Sun exposure

Soil requirements
Adaptable to a wide range of soil conditions

Water requirements
Low; tolerant of dry conditions (more so than bald cypress), Less tendency to develop root “knees” (good to consider if planted in lawn)

Heat tolerance
High; adapts to urban conditions (reflected street heat and polluted air)

Semi evergreen to evergreen, Light green needles shed in spring and immediately produce new foliage (earlier than bald cypress).  Sheds quickly when temperatures drop to 25 degrees Fahrenheit.  Yellow fall color is insignificant (unlike bald cypress)

Male flowers on long racemes (bald cypress male, short clusters)

Blooming period

Fruit characteristics
Globose, brown cones

Pests and disease
None serious

May be more salt tolerant than bald cypress.  Native to the canyons of Mexico’s Sierra Madres and deep south Texas.