Liquidambar gumball

A few weeks ago we featured the Liquidambar ‘Worplesdon’.  Now it’s the turn of its rather fetching and smaller growing relative. 

Sometimes known as the Sweet Gum Gum Ball, it was first discovered in Tennessee in 1965.  We imagine the name comes from the pom-pom-like crown that occurs naturally (although it can be finished off with a little bit of pruning in winter).   Mid-green through spring and into summer, those maple like leaves are dense, with this soft, almost shaggy appearance as they droop downwards. 

The Greenish flowers which appear in spring will eventually turn to spherical green fruits in winter, although they are largely inconspicuous.  What is noticeable is the show that arrives in Autumn and plays out for an extended period.  The shades of yellow, red and burgundy are spectacular and they last until finally falling in mid-winter. 

The nature of this tree lends itself to use as a specimen tree or in groups, where it can be used to soften a landscape to good effect.  It will grow to 3m.

LIQUIDAMBAR styraciflua 'Gumball' 45lt - May

LIQUIDAMBAR styraciflua ‘Gumball’ 45lt container @ 3m+ (measured from top of bag) – approx 5-6 year old

LIQUIDAMBAR styraciflua 'Gumball' - Queenstown

Established grouping of Liquidambar Gumball in garden in Queenstown