• South Window


    National Park Utah

Fremont's Cottonwood


Populus fremontii

Family: Salicaceae – Willow Family

Deciduous tree; 33' to 82.5' (10 to 25 m) tall

Leaves: alternate; simple; toothed; no hairs; turn yellow in fall; 0.8” to 4” (2 to 10 cm) long, 1.8” to 5” (4.5 to 12.5 cm) wide

Flowers: no petals, no sepals

Individual flowers are either male (staminate) or female (pistillate); borne in catkins on different trees (dioecious); staminate flowers with 50 to 80 stamens are 1.6” to 4” (4 to 10 cm) long with red anthers; pistillate flowers of a single pistil with 2-4 carpels and as many stigmas are 2” to 6” (5 to 15 cm) long

Pollinators: wind; not self-fertile

Fruits: capsule

Blooms in Arches National Park: March, April, May

Habitat in Arches National Park: riparian areas

Location seen: Courthouse wash

Other: The genus name, “Populus”, is Latin for "people" because the many leaves moving in a breeze resemble a moving populace. The species name, “fremontii”, honors explorer John Charles Fremont (1813-1890).

Did You Know?

Pinyon Pine

Pinyon trees do not produce pine nuts every year. These delicious nuts can only be harvested every three to seven years. This irregular schedule prevents animals from adapting to an abundance of pine nuts and guarantees that at least some nuts will become new trees instead of a quick meal.