©The World Botanical Associates Web Page
Prepared by Richard W. Spjut
Feb 2013

Platanus racemosa
Kern Co., CA
Erskine Creek
Apr 2011


Trees and Shrubs of Kern County (Feb 2013)

Platanus racemosa Nuttall 1842.  Sycamore. Deciduous tree to 36 m, bark smooth, whitish gray, creamy inside;  leaves simple, alternate, maple-like, on stalks (petioles) 2–10 cm, digitately divided into 3–5 sword-shaped lobes, the lobes serrated to entire, 10–20 cm; flowering Feb–Apr, the flowers in globular unisexual heads strung-out along a flowering branch like a shish kabob, the male heads 8–10 mm diam, the female twice as large, petals and sepals inconspicuous; fruit a spherical head of tiny fruitlets (achenosum).  Generally along rivers in the drier regions of California to northern Mexico, below 4,500 ft.  California sycamore woodlands recognized in MCV2 when >50% tree cover in the tree layer. Kern Co.: Common below the yellow pine forest (Twisselmann). Platanus racemosa-Quercus lobata Woodland Alliance proposed (Magney 2010), Tejon Ranch Conservancy, Old Headquarters.