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Liquidambar Styraciflua Silver King more commonly known as Sweet Gum Silver King, is a deciduousvariegated cultivator of Sweet Gum with vibrant autumnal colours. It has previously been listed ‘Variegata’ which is now the name of a different variety of variegated sweet gum.
In spring Silver King produces new green foliage with a creamy white margin that is star-shaped and glossy with a delicate pink tint. This bright foliage looks attractive all summer but comes into its own in the autumnal months. With colours to rival Japanese acers and maples, Liquidambar Styraciflua Silver King turns shades of red, purple and orange before falling with the frosts. In winter Sweet Gum Silver King still brings interest with fissured and corky bark known in the United States as alligator skin. Children love this bark which is one of the best for bark rubbings.
Small yellow green flowers and fruits appear in the summer. These are not particularly showy, but they are loved by pollinators and birds. As it matures this tree develops a dense crown on a pyramid-shaped frame. These specimen trees are trained and shaped as full standard trees on a clear stem.
Height and Spread of Liquidambar Styraciflua Silver King Sweet Gum Silver King will grow to an eventual height of 12-15 metres and spread over 8 metres in a fairly compact pyramid shape over the space of 20 years. It’s a small to medium sized tree that can fit into most garden landscapes. However our full standard shape render these specimens easy to maintain in smaller gardens.
How Hardy Is Liquidambar Styraciflua Silver King Liquidamber trees are temperature hardy down to subzero degrees and they enjoy strong heat. Once established they can take on temporary flooding and drought, and are resistant to brisk winds.
How To Use Liquidambar Styraciflua Silver King If you love unusual foliage throughout the year this is the perfect tree. Its spring foliage right through to its glorious autumn display is stunning.
A specimen tree or part of a border scheme suits Silver King because it doesn’t grow too large. The full standard shape means these specimens can be used along a fence line for privacy screening or to mark a structure in larger gardens.
Sweet Gum Silver King is a tough alternative to maple and acers and looks stunning set against a dark background.
How To Care for Liquidambar Styraciflua Silver King Liquidambar Styraciflua Silver King does not grow well in chalky soils and needs sunlight to grow. Choose a sunny spot for the best results in neutral to acid soils where it will develop the best and brightest colours. An annual layer of thick mulch is appreciated to boost colour and health.
If you are looking for some unusual autumn colour this a good alternative to maple trees and Japanese acers. The summer variegated foliage and its autumnal colours are stunning. If planted in chalk-free soil with the sun on its face, Sweet Gum Silver King is a low maintenance garden feature to be proud of.