EASTERN REDBUD Cercis canadensis

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Cercis canadensis, the eastern redbud, is a large deciduous shrub or small tree, native to North America in hardiness zone 5b. It is the state tree of Oklahoma.

A choice shrub or smallish tree, becomes covered in pink flowers which start before the attractive heart-shaped leaves appear. The flowers are displayed over a very long period from spring into early summer.

Cercis canadensis is grown in parks and gardens. In the wild, eastern redbud is a frequent native understory tree in mixed forests and hedgerows. It is also much planted as a landscape ornamental plant.

The flowers are showy, light to dark magenta pink in color, 1.5 cm (1⁄2 in) long, appearing in clusters from spring to early summer, on bare stems before the leaves, sometimes on the trunk itself. The flowers are pollinated by long-tongued bees such as blueberry bees and carpenter bees.

The eastern redbud typically grows to 6–9 m (20–30 ft) tall with an 8–10 m (26–33 ft) spread. It generally has a short, often twisted trunk and spreading branches. A 10-year-old tree will generally be around 5 m (16 ft) tall. The bark is dark in color, smooth, later scaly with ridges somewhat apparent, sometimes with maroon patches.

Seeds per pack: 3 rare seeds

Germination: These seeds have already been cold-stored for several months. They should be sown into well-drained, sandy compost at any time of the year, and covered to their own depth with sand or grit. No artificial heat is needed, and can prevent germination. The seed tray is best left in a cool spot outside and kept moist. Seeds usually germinate in the spring after a chilling in the cold compost, regardless of when they are sown.

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