Mexican Sycamore VS American Sycamore. Which is Taller?

We will look at the Mexican Sycamore tree VS the American sycamore tree. The Mexican sycamore (Platanus Racemosa) sheds its leaves in autumn and winter. The American sycamore (Platanus Occidentalis) doesn’t shed its leaves in autumn.

They are both similar, while they are also different at the same time. Learn more about these trees and their difference, like which is taller. So, keep reading.


Mexican Sycamore VS American Sycamore

Mexican Sycamore is a fast-growing, hardy tree that can reach up to 70 feet. It’s native to North America but has spread throughout Europe since the 17th century.

American Sycamore is a deciduous tree that can grow up to 80 feet tall and live for 200 years.


Mexican Sycamore

Mexican sycamores grow up to 35 feet tall and 20 feet wide at maturity. They have smooth bark that’s gray or brown in color with a lacy texture and leaves that turn yellow in fall before dropping off in winter. In late spring, Mexican sycamores produce clusters of small white flowers that give way to small black fruits containing seeds similar to those found in maple trees.

American Sycamore

The American sycamore grows up to 80 feet tall with a trunk diameter of up to three feet across as it matures. Its bark has vertical grooves running along, making it look like it has large scales on its surface. It has compound leaves of five or seven leaflets each, with serrated edges that turn golden yellow during autumn months before falling off.

Difference Between American and Mexican Sycamore

Both are members of the Platanus genus and have similar blooms and leaves. The main difference is their origin: Mexican Sycamore originates from central Mexico, while American Sycamore hails from eastern North America.

Let’s look at other differences:

  • Size Difference
  • Differences in Bark
  • Leaf Difference

Size Difference

The American sycamore is taller than its Mexican counterpart. While both trees grow to 75 feet or more, the American sycamore can grow up to 120 feet tall. The Mexican sycamore reaches 40 to 60 feet tall at maturity. 1

Differences in Bark

The American sycamore has smooth gray bark with deep furrows that run horizontally along the tree’s trunk. The tree has rough bark with ridges that run vertically on the tree’s trunk.

Leaf Difference

The leaves of American sycamores are large and dark green in color with a waxy surface that creates a smooth appearance when they’re new but dries out as they age. The leaves of Mexican sycamores are smaller than those of American species. But they still have waxy surfaces on them as their larger cousins do.

Mexican Sycamore Tree Lifespan

The lifespan of a Mexican sycamore tree depends on where you live and how well you take care of it. If you plant your it in an area with plenty of sun, water, and nutrients, it will grow fast and live for many years. If you place it in an area that doesn’t have enough light or water, the tree may not grow as fast or live as long.

The average life expectancy for a Mexican sycamore tree is about 150 years, but some trees have lived up to 300 years old.

Watering is essential for any plant or tree. Water your tree often during dry periods and keep its soil moist at all times during hot summer months when water may evaporate from the ground fast. You can tell when your tree needs more water by digging down into its soil with a shovel until you feel moisture coming out.

Mexican Sycamore Growth Rate

Mexican Sycamore is an evergreen tree that grows to a mature height of 50-70 feet. It has a rapid growth rate, adding 5-10 feet each year.

Mexican Sycamore is hardy in USDA zones 7 through 11. They can grow outside in many areas of the U.S., but they will not tolerate extreme cold or drought conditions when they mature.

The Mexican Sycamore is a fast-growing tree that reaches up to 100 feet tall with a spread of 35 feet wide at maturity.

Mexican Sycamore Tree Height

The Mexican sycamore reaches heights of 50 feet or more in 10 years. The trunk can grow up to 2 feet per year during its first decade with an open canopy. Once it reaches maturity, however, its growth slows significantly, and it will be about half that height for the rest of its life span.

The Mexican sycamore produces seeds every year, but they do not flower until around 15 years old. The flowers are white with red stamens and get pollinated by bees and other insects. If you want to save seed pods for planting next year, wait until they have dried out before collecting them from your trees.

Learn about sycamore wood.

Mexican Sycamore Tree Root System

A Mexican sycamore tree’s roots grow deep into the soil, which protects them from extreme temperatures and allows them access to water in times of drought. The roots grow horizontally outwards from the trunk and then spread deeper into the soil until they reach 10 feet (3 m).

The roots have feeder roots that absorb water and nutrients from the soil. It also has lateral roots that help anchor the tree and storage roots that store excess water for later use during dry spells.

The tree’s shallow root system makes it adaptable to many different soil conditions. It can grow well in sandy or rocky soil because its roots do not need as much water as other trees’ roots do.

Do Sycamore Trees Have White Bark?

The bark is light brown with white patches, making sycamore trees look like they have white bark. The white bits are just scars leftover from when the tree was young and growing fast. These scars will fade as the tree ages and becomes thicker barked.

Mexican Sycamore Tree Bark

Mexican Sycamore Tree Bark has many uses. It has gotten used for hundreds of years by the Native Americans. The tree’s bark is an effective natural remedy for many skin conditions, including acne, eczema, and dandruff.

The properties found in Mexican Sycamore Tree Bark include:

  • It has Vitamin A
  • Also, it has Vitamin E

Vitamin A

  • It helps with healthy skin growth and the repair of damaged tissue.
  • Also, it helps with vision problems like night blindness; helps prevent infections from occurring in wounds.
  • Vitamin A is a good source of antioxidants that fight free radicals in the body, which can cause cancer and other illnesses.
  • It supports immune system function.

Vitamin E

  • It prevents scarring by helping wounds heal faster.
  • Vitamin E supports cardiovascular health by lowering cholesterol levels.
  • It helps prevent cardiovascular disease by reducing inflammation in arteries (atherosclerosis).
  • Vitamin E helps reduce inflammation associated with asthma attacks and allergies; promotes healthy bone growth.
  • It promotes cell regeneration (helps tissue grow back).

Citations Used in this Article

  1. Mexican Sycamore – Platanus Mexicana | Gardening in the Panhandle (