American Yellowwood Cladrastis flowerThis southeastern native provides year round interest for those living in areas where summers are hot and winters are cold. The foot-long wisteria-like clusters of fragrant flowers appear in late spring or early summer with yellow green foliage that turns bright green in summer and golden yellow to orange in autumn. The branches start six feet from the ground and the tree has a wide rounded crown, providing excellent shade. The pale gray bark becomes furrowed and corky as it matures and exfoliates to show the orange-brown bark underneath. Drought tolerant and deep rooted, yellowwood is an excellent tree for a woodland garden where herbaceous plants will thrive in the deep soil beneath it. Outstanding tree as specimen and in city landscapes. A rare pink flowered form, “Rosea’, is available.

Type: Deciduous flowering tree

Outstanding Features: Spring flowers, fall coloration, bark, shade

Form: Wide branching with rounded crown

Growth Rate: Slow

Bloom: Fragrant white pea-like flowers are produced in drooping clusters 8-14” long in late spring to early summer.

Size: 30-50’ H

Light: Full sun; tolerates a little bit of shade.

Soil: Fertile, moist, well-drained

Hardiness: Zones 4-8

Care: Prune only in summer; winter or spring pruning causes excessive “bleeding”.

Pests and Diseases: None of significance

Propagation: Root cuttings in winter

Comments: Tree blooms heavily every other year; narrow branch angles makes tree prone to splitting.

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By Karen