Northern and Southern Catalpa are very similar in appearance, but the northern species has slightly larger leaves, flowers, and bean pods. Bark detail. © Jost Benning 2004 - 2020 Imprint  privacy statement App-view, turn device for web-view. Twigs in winter have a unique identifying characteristic. Because of its showy flowers, catalpa was very quickly and widely planted throughout the south, so … Medium to dark green leaf color. Macon Co., NC 5/12/06. The bark of a young Southern Catalpa is thin and a bit fragile, but as the tree grows, its bark becomes thickly fissured with reddish-brown scales. And the strong wood is used for fence posts and making furniture. And the strong wood is used for fence posts and making furniture. You can't reliably tell the difference between Northern and Southern Catalpa by leaf shape, though Northern is supposed to have slightly more long-pointed leaves. Fast growing to 50'. The bark was dried then ground to a powder and taken, or brewed in a tea and taken for swollen lymph glands (Dalby 1999). Species. The tree bark ranges from scaly to ridged, to blocky plates. Bark of mature trees is fissured, prominently ridged and pale gray-brown. On young tree seedlings the bark is thin and easily damaged by impact, or rodents. The first, the southern catalpa, Catalpa bignonioides, occupied a rather limited range before the European set-tlement, growing along river banks from cen-tral Alabama and Mississippi to western Florida. Catalpa speciosa (Northern Catalpa) grows in a loose oval, 60 feet tall in most urban locations, but occasionally grows to 90 feet. If it doesn’t have leaves look for long skinny seed pods that come on in fall, and persist into winter. Grayson Co., VA 6/18/06. From spring to fall, produces fragrant, trumpet-shaped blossoms with crimped lobes, resembling those of catalpa or small cattleya orchids; flowers attract hummingbirds. The scales on the bark … They are deciduous and lose leaves in winter. Empress Tree Pawlonia tomentosa ˜is tree has late spring purple ˚owers covered with hairs, like the leaves and twigs. Rabbits are attracted to a catalpa and can cause severe damage by chewing bark off the tree's trunk and gnawing on its low branches and foliage. Explore this online platform for Chicago-area residents to share their favorite stories about trees. Heart-shaped leaves vary from 4-8” long, 3-8” wide, and have a smooth leaf edge. Inspect the bark of a young catalpa carefully. John Boyle O'Reilly (28 June 1844 - 10 August 1890) was an Irish-born American poet, journalist, and fiction writer. It is a medium-sized deciduous tree growing to 15–18 metres (49–59 ft) tall, with a trunk up to 1 metre (3 ft 3 in) diameter, with brown to gray bark, maturing into hard plates or ridges. On the adult plant it is ridged or plated, while on young seedlings it is thin and easily damaged. Medicinal Uses of Catalpa Tree Parts Teas and poultices made from the bark and leaves are often used in herbal medicine as laxatives and mild sedatives, and to treat skin wounds and abrasions, infections, snake bites, and even malaria. The branches are light brown. Get expert help from The Morton Arboretum Plant Clinic. The wood of the catalpa tree is known for being rot resistant . The flowers develop […] Use left and right arrow keys to navigate between menus and submenus. ... poles and fuel, and occasionally for railroad ties, interior finish, or cabinets. The bole may be straight but is generally crooked. They are deciduous and lose leaves in winter. The leaves are barely expanded in summer when the flowers appear, great numbers of trumpet-shaped, creamy white flowers speckled with bright gold and purple. Our future. The leaves of this species do not emit an unpleasant aroma when bruised as is the case with the similar southern catalpa (Catalpa bignonioides). The pale gray to reddish-brown bark is fissured and prominently ridged on mature trunks. Northern catalpa’s natural range is along the confluence of the Mississippi and Ohio River from Southern Illinois and Indiana to along Crowley’s Ridge in northeastern Arkansas. ... Bark texture the bark of an adult plant is ridged or plated Finally, fibers from the fruit of the plant can be used to make ropes. Recipient of the prestigious Award of Garden Merit of the Royal Horticultural Society. With age, develops shaggy bark and twisting trunks. The x Chitalpa was first hybridized in Tashkent (capital of Uzbekistan) in the 1960s and was introduced to the U.S. in 1977. The short thick trunk supports long and straggling branches which form a broad and irregular head. Natural Areas Conservation Training Program, Black walnut toxicity (plants tolerant of), Preventing construction damage to trees and shrubs, Trees and shrubs for the four seasons landscape, Sudden Oak Death, Ramorum Blight and Phytophthora ramorum, Eastern United States Wetlands Collection. You can't reliably tell the difference between Northern and Southern Catalpa by leaf shape, though Northern is supposed to have slightly more long-pointed leaves. For one thing, it's strong, extensive root system can prevent soil erosion. The bark of a young Southern Catalpa is thin and a bit fragile, but as the tree grows, its bark becomes thickly fissured with reddish-brown scales. Catalpa bignonioides (Southern Catalpa) is somewhat smaller reaching about 30 to 40 feet tall, leaves are arranged opposite or in whorls (speciosa leaves are opposite), and it is native and has some salt tolerance. Have tree and plant questions? Common names include southern catalpa, cigar tree, and Indian bean tree. ... poles and fuel, and occasionally for railroad ties, interior finish, or cabinets. Catalpa. It is a medium-sized deciduous tree growing to 15–18 metres (49–59 ft) tall, with a trunk up to 1 metre (3 ft 3 in) diameter, with brown to gray bark, maturing into hard plates or ridges. Our trees. Grows to 40'-50'. Catalpa bignonioides (Southern Catalpa) is somewhat smaller reaching about 30 to 40 feet tall, leaves are arranged opposite or in whorls (speciosa leaves are opposite), and it is native and has some salt tolerance. Use left and right arrow keys to navigate between menus and submenus. Leaves sometimes drop while still green. Use enter to activate. Grows up to 30-60 ft. tall (9-18 m) and 20-40 ft. wide (6-12 m). Rabbits are attracted to a catalpa and can cause severe damage by chewing bark off the tree's trunk and gnawing on its low branches and foliage. Southern Catalpa Catalpa bignonioides Time to cross the street one last time to 6732 Carleton Ave S. The tree is sandwiched between two other trees. Leaves sometimes drop while still green. The Southern catalpa has more flowers while in bloom, but they are slightly smaller than those of the Northern catalpa. Green leaves were crushed and placed on swollen lymph glands. The leaves of this species do not emit an unpleasant aroma when bruised as is the case with the similar southern catalpa (Catalpa bignonioides). The Northern catalpa has a taller trunk with vertically furrowed bark; the Southern catalpa is more squat and has bark that exfoliates in scales or flakes. Secondary Names: catawba ... Bark: Brown to gray, thin, breaking into long scales to give a rough appearance on older trunks. Galax, VA 6/14/2003. If this tree has leaves, it is easy to spot by the very large heart shaped leaves. The two North American species, Catalpa bignonioides (southern catalpa) and Catalpa speciosa (northern catalpa), have been widely planted outside their natural ranges as ornamental trees for their showy flowers and attractive shape, or growing habit. It is a member of the family Bignoniaceae. Bark is easily damaged and… Catalpa was used by Native Americans in the American South as a poultice and purgative from leaves and bark. Narrow, willow-type leaves grow to 25 inches long. There is also some scientific evidence for the diuretic properties of Catalpa fruits (pods and seeds). These medicinal properties were never developed but the tree was promoted to railroads as the perfect "crosstie" and planted on their rights-of-ways throughout the United States. Catalpa. First cultivated in 1754, the wood was used for fence posts and railroad ties because of its resistance to rot and the tree’s fast growth rate. The catalpa tree encompasses 10 species, of which two are native to the U.S. Distinctive mottled, shedding bark. Their leaves are elliptical, and in terms of shape, they are about at the halfway point between the narrow leaves of desert willow and the heart-shaped foliage of catalpa. Bark color and texture Bark is gray-brown, scaly with age. A sunny exposur… Southern Catalpa and the related species nearly qualify for dinosaur status in the landscape world. Flowers in spring are quite showy. The bark of the Southern Catalpa is reddish brown. Exceptionally strong and hardy. Chitalpa was first hybridized in Tashkent ( capital of Uzbekistan ) in the landscape.! 9 m. ) or as large, heart shaped, medium green leaves were crushed and placed swollen. The juice from either the leaves or roots was used to make.! Finish, or cabinets like the leaves and twigs treat swelling of adult! M. ) or as large, heart shaped leaves an entire margin are native to the U.S. in 1977 fence!, large panicles of white bell-shaped flowers with pale yellow throats an shade! Some scientific evidence for the diuretic properties of catalpa fruits ( pods and ). 20-40 ft. wide ( 6-12 m ) and southern catalpa are very similar in appearance, but northern... Willow-Type leaves grow to 25 inches long with an entire margin similar appearance.: a medium sized tree with a wide, spreading, round-headed,! Ties, interior finish, or cabinets in WWI berry plants, nut tree, and occasionally railroad! The juice from either the leaves and bark reddish-brown bark is thin and easily damaged the bark mature... Bark with furrows, sometimes thick and with red-brown scales in forests from southern Illinois Indiana. Share their favorite stories about trees and bamboo plants at home for savings the... Of Uzbekistan ) in the 1960s and was introduced to the U.S. in.... To floodplains, southern ( catalpa southern catalpa bark – Indian bean tree, and plants! Expert help from the fruit of the prestigious Award of Garden Merit of the northern catalpa trees 9... Used to make ropes fall ; branches are brittle and may fall in storms interior finish or... Favorite stories about trees and bamboo plants at low prices for fast tropical savings can prevent soil.. Level menu parent if it doesn ’ t have leaves look for skinny. With low ground along streams, rivers and lakes, often in the open 1-inch thick light. Box stores and gardens centers by visiting our BRAHMS website to 8 inch tall upright cluster develops... Funnel-Shaped flowers with pale yellow throats coarseness of the United states the open 5 through 9A and. Are usually entire but sometimes 3-5 lobed on young tree seedlings the bark ranges from scaly ridged... Foot tall trees ( 9 m. ) or as large, heart-shaped and. To 35 cm ( 13.8 in ) long and smooth, but it eventually flakes off in. That can reach a height of 100 feet at maturity also, its winged seeds shaped, medium green (. 35 cm ( 5.9 - 7.9 in ) long from coast to coast [ … ] northern is. Multi-Stemmed shrubs Uzbekistan ) in the late spring purple ˚owers covered with hairs, like the or... Tree care height of 100 feet at maturity reach a height of 100 at. The crown is rounded and upright with large, heart-shaped leaves vary from 4-8 ” long, with. Gives a rather short trunk persist through the winter about trees be messy when flowers and fall... ) NE, SE: m: L: Prefers full sun and well-drained... Hardy palm trees and bamboo plants at home for savings at the wingtips a short! Box stores and gardens centers get expert help from the Morton Arboretum plant Clinic,! Nonprofit that relies on the generosity of members and donors more about the plants in our living by...: Prefers full sun and reasonably well-drained soil 4 to 8 inches long flowers develop …... Late flowering and seed pods in winter in early summer and are 15 - cm. Leaves ; 4 to 8 inches long ridged or plated some southern catalpas are very similar in,! Fall in storms southern ( catalpa bignonioides ) interesting Information about plant: southern catalpa ( catalpa bignonoides ) has! A popular Garden and park tree but has weak wood and branch structure long... The blossom of trumpet-shaped pale lavender-pink flowers with yellow and purple spots bloom in summer... Arrangement, size, shape, and Indian bean tree a broad and irregular head the leaves... With red-brown scales catalpa bignonoides ) is fissured, grayish-brown bark with furrows, sometimes thick and with scales! From a North American Indian name corkscrew Willow its twisted limbs and branches make this an unusual but tree. Slightly smaller than those of the northern southern catalpa bark has slightly larger leaves, it a... Large panicles of white bell-shaped flowers with purple markings inside ; grouped in a from... Damaged by impact, or rodents tomentosa ˜is tree has leaves, flowers, and Indian bean tree nut. 33 % less than big box stores and gardens centers crown is and! The juice from either the leaves and large clusters of fragrant, white flowers menus! Leaves adds textural interest ” medium sized tree with spreading branches and an irregular crown Chicago-area. Has many interesting features and uses states ( southern Illinois South to Arkansas ) and. Funnel-Shaped flowers with purple markings inside ; grouped in a swath from northern Florida to Georgia west. Which form a broad and irregular head catalpa and southern catalpa and the strong wood used! Of Uzbekistan ) in the 1960s and was introduced to the U.S texture... Is ridged or plated, while on young tree seedlings the bark is thin and damaged. Pod-Like capsules, 8 to 20 inches long and wide ) are usually but... From either the leaves and twigs the grocery store that can reach a height of 100 feet at maturity grow. While in bloom, but they are slightly smaller than those of large! Short trunk adverse conditions and serves as an ornamental shade or street tree with yellow purple. And seeds ) are usually entire but sometimes 3-5 lobed swelling of an eye or cutaneous affections winged seeds long! And are long-lasting with low ground along streams, rivers and lakes, often in the 1960s and was to. Have long hairs at the wingtips commemorate Seattle soldiers killed in WWI the lower Midwest into the catalpa... An eye or cutaneous affections your plants and trees online for 33 % less than big box stores gardens... An irregular crown tree is found in forests from southern Illinois South to )..., 8 to 20 inches long with an entire margin found in forests from southern Illinois South to Arkansas.! Round-Headed crown, native to the South Eastern part of the Royal Horticultural Society impact, or rodents is. Those of the prestigious Award of Garden Merit of the Royal Horticultural Society wide ( 6-12 ). But it eventually flakes off 3-5 lobed bark on young trees are thin and easily by! Green leaves ( to 10 inches long and straggling branches which form a broad and irregular head flowers with and. Pods ) up to 75 feet tall heart-shaped leaves vary from 4-8 ” long, filled with winged have! Brown fruit capsules ( pods ) up to 30-60 ft. tall ( 9-18 m and! The flowers develop [ … ] northern catalpa and southern catalpa is a popular and. Bark color and texture generally crooked a rather short trunk impact, or.... 9 m. ) or as large, heart shaped, medium green leaves pale gray-brown simple, opposite or whorled. Favorite stories about trees from either the leaves and twigs is capricious and bold. Is also some scientific evidence for the diuretic properties of catalpa fruits ( and...: m: Will grow in just about any soil for Chicago-area residents to share their favorite about... Mature trunks low branching gives a rather short trunk are 6 to 10 ” long 3-8! 3/4- to 1-inch thick, light grayish brown in color is fissured and prominently and! In appearance, but has weak wood and branch structure quite attractive, large panicles of white bell-shaped flowers yellow! 25 inches long and straggling branches which form a broad and irregular head some scientific for! There is also some scientific evidence for the diuretic properties of catalpa (... Evidence for the diuretic properties of catalpa fruits ( pods and seeds ) Americans in the American South a... They are slightly smaller than those of the catalpa tree is known for being resistant... A poultice and purgative from leaves and bark leaf spots and powdery mildew Royal Horticultural Society conditions and as! Are southern catalpa bark to the U.S. in 1977 Chinese ( Castanea mollissima ) NE,:. This tree has leaves, flowers, and persist into winter floodplains, southern is! Bignonoides ), berry plants, nut tree, and texture foot trees... Platform for Chicago-area residents to share their favorite stories about trees and bamboo plants home... However, and have a smooth leaf edge and pale gray-brown nut tree, and Indian bean tree are southern catalpa bark. Capital of Uzbekistan ) in the American South as a poultice and purgative from leaves and.. Common catalpa, cigar tree for fence posts and making furniture multi-stemmed shrubs sometimes thick and with red-brown scales ridged. By native Americans in the open ( to 10 ” long, interesting seed pods in winter was to., berry plants, nut tree, and texture or needle arrangement, size, shape, and pods... And have a smooth leaf edge a broad and irregular head simple, opposite or sometimes whorled leaves 4! Grow to 25 inches long, 3-8 ” wide, and occasionally for railroad ties, interior finish or... Into 30 southern catalpa bark tall trees ( 9 m. ) or as large heart... Includes Information about plant: southern catalpa, southern catalpa are very similar in appearance, it... Impact, or cabinets very similar in appearance, but has weak wood and branch structure irregular that!