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Liquidambar styraciflua ‘Palo Alto’

For sale by Bluebell Nursery

This grower is sure of this plant identification.

Rare in the United Kingdom, Liquidambar styraciflua 'Palo Alto' has a reasonably upright habit and brilliant orange-red autumn colour. This leaf colour is similar in appearance to that of some Japanese Maples, turning a darker red before falling.

A handsome tree with lovely mottled autumn colour.

Supplied Size: 4L containers (40 - 60 cm tall)

Copyright 2013 © Bluebell Arboretum & Nursery

Liquidambar styraciflua  ‘Palo Alto’ | Ashby De La Zouch, Derbyshire, LE65
Liquidambar styraciflua  ‘Palo Alto’ | Ashby De La Zouch, Derbyshire, LE65
Pot SizeTotal Price
4 litres

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Grower Notes

Position: Full sun or light, dappled shade.
Soil: Moist, fertile soil. Liquidambar styraciflua 'Palo Alto' will grow well in most areas but will produce its most bright and vivid autumn colour in lime free or acidic soils.
Hardiness: Reasonably hardy. Young plants can suffer die back after very severe late spring frosts, but usually recover well.
Rate of Growth: Moderate to vigorous.
Habit: Liquidambar styraciflua 'Palo Alto' grows to be a medium sized tree with a neat, pyramidal form.
Height: 15 m (50 ft)
Spread: 12 m (40 ft)

Notes: The autumn colour of individual plants will vary according to weather and in particular the pH of your soil. The best, most vivid colours will occur in lime-free or acid soils. A liberal annual application of flowers of sulphur around the base of a Liquidambar, at a rate of up to 2 oz. per square yard on neutral or slightly alkaline soils will slowly lower the pH and intensify the autumn colour!

Plant Finder: about Liquidambar styraciflua ‘Palo Alto’

Common names

Sweet Gum 'Palo Alto'


Liquidambar styraciflua ‘Palo Alto’ (Sweet Gum 'Palo Alto'). This is an unusual sweet gum with more deeply lobed leaves. From green foliage in summer, this tree turns a mixture of crimson reds and oranges in the autumn, producing more of a mottled effect than other sweetgums, more akin to the Japanese acers.


They are temperate-climate plants, requiring sun or part-shade and fertile, deep, loamy soil with adequate water during spring and summer. They will not thrive in shallow, sandy soil. The trees are best allowed to develop their lower branches to ground level.

Interest and use

Grown mainly for its autumn foliage interest

Italics = data drawn from parent genus or species

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Liquidambar styraciflua  ‘Palo Alto’ | Ashby De La Zouch, Derbyshire, LE65 | Copyright Greenplantswap 2019
  • LightFull sun or Part shade
  • HardinessHardy (min -10°C)
  • SoilWell drained, Fertile
  • Soil pH5.0 to 7.0
  • WaterMoist

Meet the grower

Ashby De La Zouch, Derbyshire, LE65
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