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10 Small Trees


1
Sourwood (Oxydendrum arboreum)
While the leaves may look pretty in all their colored glory, they're actually quite sour.
While the leaves may look pretty in all their colored glory, they're actually quite sour.
©iStockphoto.com/JohnSeiler

This graceful tree reaches 30 feet (9 meters) and has a narrow, rounded crown and drooping branches that fall in in a pyramid shape.

In summer, fragrant lily-of-the-valley-like flowers appear and then turn into greenish yellow seed pods.

In autumn, the glossy green leaves turn yellow, red and purple. It's the largest member of the azalea family and grows natively from southern Illinois to Louisiana and Florida. Sourwood gets it name from the sour taste of the leaves, which were once brewed up for medicinal purposes. Today, juice from its flowers is used to make sourwood jelly.


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