May 3, 2007
WHAT'S THAT TREE CALLED ?
"I want one of those trees, you know the ones you see blooming along the Lake, lavender-pink ?" is a frequent question I get . Cercis Canadensis . Redbud. That's what you want.
The redbud is a wonderful small ornamental tree reaching 15 x 15 feet in most gardens. Truth be told it is not a really long lived one, however, averaging about 15-20 years. Even though it says it will survive in Zone 4, in my experience it needs a rather protected site, even in Zone 5.
Legend has it that Judas Iscariot hung himself from the European species of this tree, thus it is sometimes referred to as " The Judas " tree. It's flowers can be eaten fried or tossed in salads . Cardinals are attracted to its seeds.
The Redbud needs a soil with lots of organic matter and does better if protected from windy, bitterly cold areas.