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Catalpa bignonioides /Southern Catalpa

Catalpa bignonioides  / Catalpa bignonioides
Tree in full bloom
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Tree in full bloom

Close-up of funnel-shaped flowers

Flowers and large, coarse textured, heart-shaped leaves

Mass of flowers in early spring


Long, 12-15" seed pods in mid summer

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Scientific Name: Catalpa bignonioides
Common Name: Southern Catalpa
Plant Type: Deciduous
Leaf Type: Broadleaf
Hardiness Zone: 6, 7, 9 Determine Your Zone
Height: 30-50 feet
Spread: 20- 30 feet
Bloom time: Spring
Flower color: White
Fruit present: Summer, Fall
Fruit color: Brown
Light Exposure: Sun, Part Sun
Drainage: Well drained, Moist, Dry
Rate of Growth: Fast
Water Requirement: Medium
Maintenance Level: Low
Susceptible to insects
and diseases:
Landscape Categories: Plants That Attract Butterflies
Comments: Its flowers are quite showy. The larvae of a moth eats the leaves of the plant. These larvae, called catalpa worms, are prized as fish bait. Grows fast, but does not bloom for several years. Can be a messy tree in manicured landscapes, but makes a good open lawn specimen tree. Can be a long-lived tree, but trees become rangy and open with advanced age. Very popular in European landscapes. Leaf diseases can sometime be a problem.