LIQUIDAMBAR FORMOSANA – SWEETGUM, FORMOSAN
Although it grows at a moderate pace, Formosa Sweetgum requires continually-moist soils. It is recommended only for acidic soils since chlorosis develops on soils with a pH over 7.5. It grows very well in clay soils which hold moisture, and tolerates wet soil. Formosa Sweetgum should be regularly root pruned in the nursery to help transplant survival. Liquidambar spp. grow very well for several years after transplanting in Texas and in other areas with a high pH subsoil but chlorosis often develops as some roots establish themselves in the alkaline subsoil. Fruits are not as messy as the native Sweetgum because they are less woody.
It appears difficult to maintain a straight leader in this tree, even when the tree is small in the nursery. Reduce the length of co-dominant stems as they appear when they are young. This will help maintain a dominant leader.