Cercis - Judas Tree, Redbud
DESCRIPTION: This group of beautiful, deciduous trees or shrubs grows wild in North America and from southern Europe to eastern Asia. These plants are commonly known as Redbuds because, in early spring before their leaves open, their branches are covered with an abundance of purplish-pink flowers. Redbud Trees bear flowers at 4 or 5 years of age. In late spring, 3- to 5-inch, glossy green, heart-shaped leaves are produced; these turn yellow in autumn, before falling off. C. canadensis is a small tree that grows up to 35 feet high. It develops a wide, round head. In the spring, its branches are clothed with light rose, pea-like flowers. C. canadensis var. Forest Pansy is a large shrub or small tree that is covered with beautiful, dark reddish-purple leaves. Its inconspicuous flowers are borne in late spring and early summer. C. siliquastrum (Judas Tree) is a medium-sized tree or large shrub that is covered in rosy-lilac blossoms in late spring. The flowers are followed by purple-tinged seedpods. It is said that this was the tree from which Judas Iscariot hung himself, but the name may be derived from the fact that it was once widely grown in the hills of Judaea. A variety of this type, alba, forms a large shrub or medium-sized tree with light green leaves and white flowers in late spring.
C. canadensis; leguminosae
POTTING: The different types vary in what climates they can live; therefore, check which varieties local nurseries offer. For example, C. canadensis can be grown over the entire U.S., while C. texensis can be grown in mild climates only. All Redbud Trees need full sun or light shade and moist, well-drained sandy loam that is deep enough to accommodate the trees' long roots. Purchase trees that are no more than 6 feet in height. Redbud Trees are usually slow sending out their leaves the first season after being planted. Pruning is rarely required.
PROPAGATION: Softwood cuttings may be used to increase these trees.
C. canadensis & var. Forest Pansy;
C. canadensis; leguminosae; Forest Pansy;
C. siliquastrum & var. Alba, Bodnant.
Go see DICTIONARY OF BOTANICAL NAMES.
Back to our botanical home page.