Cypress Trees

The Bald Cypress tree gave its name to the Cypress Wetlands.  These trees are most prominent near the Overlook, and in the pond north of 16th Street.  Another large cypress wetland pond with a shady boardwalk leading through it lies between 14th and 15th Street along Richmond Avenue across from Bruce Edgerly Memorial Park.  The 14th Street pond contains the largest and oldest cypress trees in the Cypress Wetlands.

In 2001 and 2002, the Town planted bald cypress, tupelo, and other native trees and shrubs to restore the wetland.  By improving flow under road crossings, the restoration project also reduced flooding, improved water quality, and connected the ponds to the river and sea.

Common trees here include red maple, sweet gum, shrubs like elderberry, cabbage palm, and wax myrtle.  In the water, shrubs like buttonbush and willow, and floating miniature plants like duckweed (green) and mosquito fern (red) cover much of the water by the end of the summer.  These floating plants are not algae, but a healthy part of the ecosystem that produces oxygen, shade the water in summer and provide food and shelter for animals like turtles, frogs, and fish.

The series of wetlands provide natural stormwater capture, retention, and treatment over the days that it takes the water to flow through the system.  This improves the quality of the water that drains to the river and Port Royal Sound by trapping pollution, sediments, and excess nutrients.  In turn, the habitats, fish and wildlife, shellfish beds, and ecosystems downstream also benefit.

Common Trees and Plants in the Cypress Wetlands

  • Poke weed
  • Grape
  • Virginia creeper
  • Smilax
  • Pine
  • Oak
  • Poison ivy
  • Bay
  • Wax myrtle
  • Magnolia
  • Sweet bay magnolia
  • Buttonwood 
  • Willow 
  • Dog fennel 
  • Duck weed 
  • Elderberry
  • Chinese tallow
  • Bald cypress
  • Yaupon holly
  • Chinese privet
  • Bracken fern
  • Morning glory
  • Scrub palmetto
  • Southern shield fern
  • Sassafras
  • Carolina Jessamine
  • Wisteria
  • Red bud
  • Palmetto
  • Mulberry
  • Sassafras