Monday, April 9, 2012

The Redbud Tree is All Heart(s)


The Redbud Tree is All Heart(s)

The ornamental Redbud tree is a delight to see. At every stage it draws you in to appreciate its color, flowers, and leaves. The flowers are now an attention-getting purply pink that last for weeks. The leaves, when they appear, start out as maroon, turn deep green, and eventually yellow. And you have to love the shape of the leaves – they look like hearts!

It is an understory tree, which means that it thrives under the canopy of taller trees, usually growing between twenty and thirty feet. Yet it is adaptable. It can grow out in the open and pretty much in any soil (even clay, hooray!) though it does prefer some drainage.

The Redbud is an early blossoming tree and stands out against the slower developing trees. The fruit hangs in pods like peas and is edible. The flowers can be used in salads. Native peoples used the bark to make a medicinal tea to treat fevers and congestion like whooping cough.

Quite a multi-purpose tree. It nurtures in a variety of ways. Did I mention that bees are attracted to its pollen and that hummingbirds like its nectar? Without a doubt, this is a tree that deserves to be valued. Whenever I look in my backyard and see the spring Redbud, I can feel my spirit expand. And all summer long its heart-shaped leaves will remind me to keep looking for the spirit in all life forms.

About the Redbud:

http://plants.usda.gov/factsheet/pdf/fs_ceca4.pdf

http://www.arborday.org/programs/nationaltree/redbud.cfm

Pictorial details:

http://www.duke.edu/~cwcook/trees/ceca.html

4 comments:

  1. Ferida,

    You lifted my spirits with your beautiful essay.

    Thanks!

    Barbara

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    Replies
    1. I'm so glad. The Redbud does that for me.

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  2. We just "lost" our weeping cherry tree. This tree looks like a good replacement. Thanks for the idea

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    Replies
    1. Sorry to hear about your cherry tree. We "lost" a couple ourselves over the years. Good luck with the Redbud. It seems to be a forgiving tree.

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