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Fremont Cottonwood
Populus fremontii
  
About Fremont Cottonwood (Populus fremontii) 26 Nurseries Carry This Plant The Fremont Cottonwood is a cottonwood native to North America, growing in riparian areas near streams, rivers, and wetlands in the southwestern part of the United States, and downwards into Mexico. It is a large tree growing from 12-35 meters in height, with a trunk up to 1.5 meter diameter. The bark is smooth when young, becoming deeply fissured with whitish cracked bark on old trees. Flower cluster consists of a long drooping catkin, which blooms from March to April. The fruit is a wind dispersed achene, that appears to look like patches of cotton hanging from limbs, thus the name cottonwood. Often only the male plants are sold. The leaves are heart-shaped with white veins and coarse crenate teeth along the sides. It's an important plant for birds and butterflies.

Fremont Cottonwoods require moist soil and plenty of sun, but are tough and easy to grow. When properly situated and with access to plenty of water, they can grow 10-20 feet in a year and reach up to 100 feet in height and 35 feet in width - so not a great choice for small gardens. Best to plant these trees by creeks, in seeps, or in areas with plenty of natural water. Unless planted by a lawn that gets daily water, they require more water than you're likely to want to give them through artificial irrigation. They can handle occasional flooding without a problem. The leaves are beautiful and create a spectacular effect when they shimmer in the wind.

This plant is tough and easy to grow, and pretty much foolproof as long as it gets enough water.
Plant Description
Plant Type
Plant Type
Tree

Size
Size
39.4 - 114.8 ft tall
35 ft wide

Form
Form
Upright Columnar

Growth Rate
Growth Rate
Fast

Dormancy
Dormancy
Winter Deciduous

Fragrance
Fragrance
None

Flower Color
Flower Color
White, Cream

Flowering Season
Flowering Season
Spring, Winter

Wildlife Supported
 
Insects, especially butterflies, and birds

Landscaping Information
Sun
Sun
Full Sun

Moisture
Moisture
Moderate - High

Summer Irrigation
Summer Irrigation
Keep moist

Nurseries
Nurseries

Ease of Care
Ease of Care
Very Easy

Cold Tolerance
Cold Tolerance
Tolerates cold to 5° F

Soil Drainage
Soil Drainage
Fast, Medium, Slow

Soil Description
Soil Description
Accepts either sandy or clay soil as long as there is sufficient water. Tolerates Saline Soil. Soil PH: 6.0 - 8.0

Common uses
Common uses
Bird Gardens, Butterfly Gardens

Companion Plants
Companion Plants

Maintenance
Maintenance
Subject to truck and branch canker if drought stressed

Propagation
Propagation?
For propagating by seed: No treatment. Use fresh seeds, usually viable only a few days. Seeds should not be covered or pressed into medium; seedbed should be kept saturated for first mo. Easily propagated from stem cuttings.

Natural Setting
Site Type
Site Type
Almost always found in riparian or other wetland habitats such as alluvial bottom lands, streamsides, and seeps throughout the state, up to 6,500 ft. Usually found adjacent to chaparral, valley grassland, and several types of woodland vegetation communities. In desert riparian areas it occurs adjacent to creosote bush scrub or desert transition chaparral.

Climate
Climate
Annual Precipitation: 2.5" - 75.8", Summer Precipitation: 0.14" - 2.54", Coldest Month: 29.9" - 62.1", Hottest Month: 58.4" - 89.5", Humidity: 0.46" - 47.01", Elevation: -190" - 7224"


Sources include: Wikipedia. All text shown in the "About" section of these pages is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. Plant observation data provided by the participants of the California Consortia of Herbaria, Sunset information provided by Jepson Flora Project. Propogation from seed information provided by the Santa Barbara Botanical Garden from "Seed Propagation of Native California Plants" by Dara E. Emery. Sources of plant photos include CalPhotos, Wikimedia Commons, and independent plant photographers who have agreed to share their images with Calscape. Other general sources of information include Calflora, CNPS Manual of Vegetation Online, Jepson Flora Project, Las Pilitas, Theodore Payne, Tree of Life, The Xerces Society, and information provided by CNPS volunteer editors, with special thanks to Don Rideout. Climate data used in creation of plant range maps is from PRISM Climate Group, Oregon State University, using 30 year (1981-2010) annual "normals" at an 800 meter spatial resolution.

Links:   Jepson eFlora Taxon Page  CalPhotos  Wikipedia  Calflora


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