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PlantFiles: Lanceleaf Cottonwood
Populus x acuminata

Family: Salicaceae (sal-i-KAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Populus (POP-yoo-lus) (Info)
Species: x acuminata


over 40 ft. (12 m)

30-40 ft. (9-12 m)

USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)
USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)
USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)
USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:
Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:
Unknown - Tell us


Other details:
This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From hardwood cuttings

Seed Collecting:
N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

Click thumbnail
to view:

By uglysteve
Thumbnail #1 of Populus x acuminata by uglysteve

By uglysteve
Thumbnail #2 of Populus x acuminata by uglysteve


No positives
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Neutral uglysteve On Oct 25, 2009, uglysteve from Apache Junction, AZ wrote:

I planted a lanceleaf cottonwood 2 years ago. It was a skinny stick about 1/2 inch in diameter, and about 4 feet tall. It is now about 15 feet tall, and about 3 to 4 inch diameter at the base. It's the fastest growing tree I have. It takes the desert summer heat (115+) with enough water. Some leafs turn brown. I deep water it once a week. Seems to like finer soil that holds moisture. I had another one that was in sandy soil, and it died. Last winter when I cut off some low branches, I put them in the ground, and they all rooted. Some died when I failed to water. They are in a wash, so I hope I will be able to cut back on the water in a couple of years.

One problem I have is that bees seem to love to eat the new growth, all summer, when no flowers are blooming. That seems to be slowing the growth. The tree will be covered in bees collecting resin. The branch tips turn black, and the new leafs are deformed. The good thing is that in spring there are enough flowers to distract the bees, so the tree can grow.

Update: The tree is now 4 years old, still doing good. Looses 1/2 of it's leaves when the temperature is over 110F. It's surviving the heat, and still growing fast. Cuttings have grown from 2 foot sticks to 15 feet tall in 2 or 3 years.
Good, Aspen like tree (the trunk) for the desert at 1800 ft. elevation, and higher. Sunset zone 12, in full sun. Looks great in the spring, a bit ragged and worn out by fall.
Yellow fall collor.

Update: The tree is about 5 years old now and still doing well.

Update: The tree in the picture is still ok, but a clone about 5 years old died from sooty canker. I have also lost several Freemont cottonwoods to sooty canker. The stress of the hot summer and drought seems to let sooty canker spread very quickly in cottonwoods. All the trees that died were pruned last winter. May be my bleach water that I used to clean my tools, was too weak.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Apache Junction, Arizona
Flagstaff, Arizona

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