Nyssa sylvatica

From Coastal Plain Plants Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search

Common name: blackgum [1], sour gum [2], pepperidge [2]

Nyssa sylvatica
Nyssa sylvatica SEF.jpg
Photo by John Gwaltney at the Southeasten Flora Database
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta - Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida - Dicots
Order: Cornales
Family: Cornaceae
Genus: Nyssa
Species: N. sylvatica
Binomial name
Nyssa sylvatica
Natural range of Nyssa sylvatica from USDA NRCS Plants Database.

Taxonomic Notes

Synonyms: N. sylvatica var. dilatata Fernald; N. sylvatica var. caroliniana (Poiret) Fernald

Varieties: none


N. sylvatica is a perennial tree of the Cornaceae family native to North America and Canada. [1]


N. sylvatica is found in the southeastern corner of the United States from Texas to Maine, as well as the Ontario region of Canada. [1]



N. sylvatica proliferates in dry or mesic upland forests, less commonly in bottomlands, pine savannas, or upland depressions, where occasionally inundated briefly. [2] Specimens have been collected from residential areas, upland open woodland, mixed upland hardwoods, floodplain of creek, mesic wooded bluff, flatwoods, shores of lake, river floodplain, live oak stand of cypress depression, edge of small pond, slash pine flatwoods, wet hammock, cypress-gum pond, and pine woodland. [3]


N. sylvatica has been observed flowering February through May. [4] It is also a relatively shade-tolerant species. [5]

Seed dispersal

This species is thought to be dispersed by consumption by vertebrates. [6]

Fire ecology

N. sylvatica is not fire resistant and has low fire tolerance. [1]

Use by animals

N. sylvatica has medium palatability tp browsing animals. [1]

Conservation and Management

Cultivation and restoration

Photo Gallery

References and notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 USDA Plant Database https://plants.usda.gov/core/profile?symbol=NYSY
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Weakley, A. S. (2015). Flora of the Southern and Mid-Atlantic States. Chapel Hill, NC, University of North Carolina Herbarium.
  3. URL: http://herbarium.bio.fsu.edu. Last accessed: June 2018. Collectors: Loran C. Anderson, R.K. Godfrey, Angus Gholson, Wilson Baker, Patricia Elliot, A.F. Clewell, E. Tyson, E.A. Hebb, H. Kurz, Richard Mitchell, D. B. Ward, W.G. D'Arcy, C. Monk, H. Larry Stripling, Elmar Prichard, R. Komarek, R. Jean, Kevin Oakes, Cecil Slaughter, Marc Minno, T. MacClendon, K. MacClendon, Tom Gilpin, William Platt, Richard Carter, W. Baker, Sidney McDaniel, Andre Clewell, Walter S. Judd, Bob Simmons, Dana Griffin, Bruce Hansen, JoAnn Hansen, R.F. Doren, Gwynn Ramsey, E.S. FOrd, P.L Redfearn, Richard Houk, William Lindsey, R. Kral, Robert Lazor, R. A> Norris, K. Craddock Burks, K.M. Meyer. States and counties: Florida (Liberty, Leon, Walton, Suwannee, Okaloosa, Wakulla, Jefferson, Jackson, Gadsden, Columbia, Bay, Alachua, Lake, Baker, Calhoun, Osceola, Clay, Washington, Dixie, Flagler, Franklin, Madison, St. Johns, Taylor, Volusia) North Carolina (Bladen) Georgia (Grady, Thomas, Grady) Tennessee (Macon)
  4. Nelson, G. PanFlora: Plant data for the eastern United States with emphasis on the Southeastern Coastal Plains, Florida, and the Florida Panhandle. www.gilnelson.com/PanFlora/ Accessed: 24 MAY 2018
  5. Albrecht, M. A. and B. C. McCarthy (2006). "Effects of prescribed fire and thinning on tree recruitment patterns in central hardwood forests." Forest Ecology and Management 226(1-3): 88-103.
  6. Kirkman, L. Katherine. Unpublished database of seed dispersal mode of plants found in Coastal Plain longleaf pine-grasslands of the Jones Ecological Research Center, Georgia.