This low-maintenance deciduous shade tree is found natively in much of the Eastern US and in the Southeastern corner of Missouri, usually in low, wet, woodland areas or along stream beds. It iss planted as a shade tree in many parks and lawns because of its ease of care and tolerance of a wide variety of soil conditions. Gum from the tree has long been used for a variety of purposes, including chewing gum, incense, perfumes, flavorings, medicines and folk remedies; however the hard spiked fruiting clusters, or “gumballs,” are often considered a nuisance.

Sweetgum Tree