About the Tupelo Tree and Making Tupelo Honey
The tupelo tree is part of the Nyssaceae family, a group of trees highly tolerant of wet soils and flooding. The tupelo tree grows mainly in the Apalachicola River Basin of Northwest Florida. The swamp-like conditions of the river provide the perfect environment for the tupelo tree. This small growing location in the southeast United States contributes to the rarity of tupelo honey.
The tree itself has deep, watery roots and beautiful, glossy green foliage. In the fall, the leaves change to shades of orange, yellow, bright red, scarlet, and purple. In the spring, the tupelo tree only blooms for about one to two weeks, making the harvest period for tupelo honey very short. To gather pure tupelo honey, beekeepers have to keep their hives on platforms or floats because of the swampy environment of the Apalachicola River Basin.