Redbuds – the new Japanese Maple?

June 2, 2009

With so many new forms of Redbuds emerging, I  almost wonder if they will almost become the ‘new Japanese Maple.’ Forest Pansy’ – the purple leaf form is  considered almost old hat now. In our climate in the piedmont of NC the purple color begins to fade to a off green in about 6 weeks, once the heat of our summers come into play. This year we are excited about being able to offer young trees of  ‘Floating Clouds’ which is an improvement over ‘Silver Clouds’ in having much more white in the leaves. We have them potted in 5 and 7 gal pots and they look great. We also have continued to offer ‘Hearts of Gold’ which is the form found in Raliegh NC with  large brilliant yellow leaves. In summer, in full sun, the newly emerging leaves continue to have the bright color. We have kept the specimen in our arboretum garden tightly pruned due to lack of space and the tree is dense and beautuiful. We are also offering ‘Oklahoma’ which is the texas subspecies that has the very glossy leaves and brighter than normal spring flowers. ‘Traveler’ is the weeping cultivar that we perfer. It is also a texas sub-species variant so it also shares the characteristic of having the glossy leaves. By end of the summer, the quality the leaves of Oklahoma’ and Traveler are still excellent.  In the future look for weeping purple forms, weeping white forms . Denny Werner has been working on Redbud breeding and has some exciting forms coming down the pipeline. In the meantime, try some of the offerings we have this year.

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