Commercially, the terms tidewater red cypress, gulf cypress, red cypress (coast type) and yellow cypress (inland type) are frequently used.
About half of the cypress lumber comes from the Southern States and about one fourth from the South Atlantic States. Old-growth baldcypress is no longer readily available but second growth wood is available.
The sapwood of baldcypress is narrow and nearly white.
The color of the heartwood varies widely, ranging from light yellowish brown to dark brownish red, brown or chocolate. The wood is moderately heavy, moderately strong, and moderately hard. The heartwood of old-growth baldcypress is one of the most decay resistant of U.S. species but second growth wood is only moderately resistant to decay. Shrinkage is moderately low but somewhat higher than that of the cedars and lower than that of Southern Pine.
The wood of certain baldcypress trees frequently contains pockets or localized areas that have been attacked by a fungus. Such wood is known as pecky cypress. The decay caused by this fungus is stopped when the wood is cut into lumber and dried. Pecky cypress is therefore durable and useful where water tightness is unnecessary, appearance is not important, or a novel effect is desired. When old-growth wood was available, baldcypress was used principally for building construction, especially where resistance to decay was required.
It was also used for sashes, doors, blinds, tanks, vats, ship/boat building and crates. Small amounts are used for flooring and furniture.