The sycamore tree is a common tree mainly found east of the Great Plains. Its scientific name is Platanus Occidentalis and it's one of the largest in the eastern forests. The tree is broad and great for shade. It has a distinctive white bark and is valuable for timber. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, Native Americans used sycamore for medicinal purposes, including cough and cold relief.


The sycamore tree favors a climate range between 40 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit with extremes of -30 and 105 degrees Fahrenheit. Found in the eastern forests, the sycamore grows best where annual precipitation is 30 to 80 inches and there are between 100 and 300 frost-free days.


Typical sycamore trees grow to be 70 to 100 feet tall with a spread between 60 and 80 feet. They are typically broad and round. This is why they make great shade trees.

Soil Preferences

Preferring mostly moist and well drained soil, the sycamore tree is tolerant of wet soil conditions along streams and in bottom lands. However, it is not very tolerant of flooding during growing season.


When planted in well drained and moist soil and exposed to full sun, the sycamore tree reaches maturity moderately fast. Within twenty years, a sycamore tree will grow to maturity at a height up to 100 feet.


The leaves of a sycamore tree are light green that turn golden in color in the fall.