California Sycamore

Platanus racemosa

Habitat: Riparian

Value to the Environment: This plant is very important to the environment because many birds depend upon it to build their nests. The Sycamore is a very big tree and has a lot of holes when it gets older. Animals like squirrels and rodents use hollows in the tree to live in and reproduce. The Sycamore is an indicator of a riparian environment. It helps provide the shade needed to keep a stream healthy.

Value to Man: The Native Americans used the limbs and branches to make houses. They boiled the bark with Ephedra tea to make a cure for asthma. They also used the wood from the Sycamore to make bowls, after seasoning the wood in water and greasing it with meat or oil to prevent splitting.

Today the Sycamore is a beautiful and popular shade tree.