Blackgum - Nyssa sylvatica
Native to USA
State distribution (USDA): AL, AR, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MO, MS, NC, NH, NJ, NY, OH, OK, PA, RI, SC, TN , TX, VA, VT, WI, WV
Medium to large-sized deciduous tree, ranging from 50 to 80 feet in height, with a 30 to 40-foot spread. Blackgum (also known as Black Tupelo) is recognized for the the dark berries and fiery red leaves that it produces in autumn. The berries, which will only set fruit when pollinated, are attractive to many species, including the American Robin and Northern Flicker. In spring and summer the Blackgum also plays host to and attracts a variety of insects and caterpillars (which will in turn attract insectivorous birds), in part due to the nectar-filled flowers it produces. Nuthatches and Woodpeckers frequent the tree due to its deeply furrowed bark, Woodpeckers also like the berries. Blackgum is also a popular nesting tree, especially for cavity nesters because the trunk of a mature tree often has natural cavities.