Tuesday, October 2, 2012

A Great Shade Tree for Utah - Catalpa speciosa

Catalpa speciosa - a.k.a. Western Catalpa or Northern Catlapa - is a great choice for a medium to large sized tree for the Wasatch Front.  Catalpa is native to the midwestern United States, but it grows very well here in Utah.  It has huge, bright green leaves and fragrant flowers in early summer.   It provides dense shade.  Though it needs regular watering,  it tolerates drought conditions very well.  After a long, hot and dry summer like this one, the Catalpa's leaves are not scorched like many other trees' leaves are.  The only drawbacks with the Catalpa - and they are far outweighed by the benefits - is that the dropping flowers in early summer can make a small mess over a sidewalk or driveway, and the long, bean-like pods can also be a little messy in the fall.  Catalpa is a beautiful tree!
Catalpa sepeciosa in Salt Lake City

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