Swamp Cypress - Taxodium distichum
The swamp cypresses are only found in South East USA, Mexico and just in to Guatemala. They are remarkable for their ability to grow in very wet areas. They also produce strange ‘knees’ called pneumatophores but the function of these isn’t really known yet. Some think it is to help get oxygen to the tree's roots but it is more likely that it helps in stabilising the trees in swampy wet ground, such as mangroves.
There is an amazing group of swamp cypress on the east side of Marshal's Lake. These were all planted in 1925 and now provide a blaze of vibrant reds and browns in autumn.
The swamp cypress is just one of five deciduous conifers. Bedgebury has specimens of all five and you can read about them by clicking here.