Franklinia - Franklin Tree, Franklinia, Gordonia
DESCRIPTION: F. alatamaha is an autumn-flowering tree or shrub, commonly known as the Franklin Tree, Franklinia and Gordonia. This tree grows 20 to 30 feet high in the South or West, but only 6 to 10 feet high in the North. The Franklin Tree has reddish brown branches that are covered with 5-inch, glossy bright green leaves. The foliage turns orange and red in the fall at about the same time the flowers open. The fragrant, white flowers are 5 inches across and have golden yellow stamens at the center.
POTTING: Grow this tree in full sun or light shade, though full sun exposure will produce brighter autumn colors and more blossoms. They should be grown in moist, well-drained acidic soil with a pH of 5.0 to 6.0. Add a lot of peat moss or leaf mold to the soil. The ground around the Franklin Tree should not be cultivated. Container grown trees and balled and burlapped trees should be planted in the spring. They rarely need pruning.
PROPAGATION: These trees can be increased by softwood cuttings taken in late spring, or by ground layering.
VARIETIES: F. alatamaha.
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