Redbud (Cercis canadensis)
One of the most beautiful and conspicuous trees at the Arboretum in April is the Redbud. This tree is most commonly seen at forest edges, in disturbed areas, or in managed landscapes. Redbud is a member of the bean family (Fabaceae), and in a natural setting is an early invader of disturbed areas where it grows quickly but is generally short lived (20-25 years). Distinguishing characteristics of Redbud include its rose-pink, pea-like flowers, its heart-shaped leaves, and its flat, brown, bean-like pods.
At the Arboretum you will see Redbud along several trails and bordering some open areas. A research planting near the Program Shelter is in full bloom. The larger trees in this area are survivors of a failed research study originally planted in 1995. A new planting of redbuds was made in 2007 next to these older trees; the young trees are just becoming established. The objective of the current study is to evaluate Chinese Redbuds and ones from a northern location in the United States for potential introduction in Eastern Tennessee.
Identify more trees with our Tree Identification Guide >>