Empress Tree
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Empress Tree
ntroduced Photo: Tabish
Common name: Empress tree, Princess Tree, Foxglove Tree, Pao tong (Chinese)
Botanical name: Paulownia tomentosa    Family: Paulowniaceae (Empress Tree family)

Empress Tree is a deciduous tree native to central and western China. It grows to 10-25 m tall, with large heart-shaped to five-lobed leaves 15-40 cm across, arranged in opposite pairs on the stem. On young growth, the leaves may be in whorls of three and be much bigger than the leaves on more mature growth. The flowers are produced before the leaves in early spring, on panicles 10-30 cm long, with a tubular purple corolla 4-6 cm long resembling a foxglove flower. The fruit is a dry egg-shaped capsule 3-4 cm long, containing numerous tiny seeds. Empress tree is a really fast growing tree. The Chinese plant this tree when their daughter is born. When she marries, they cut the tree down and make furniture and other useful things for her and her new husband. This tree is rare in India.
Identification credit: Tabish Photographed in Chirag Nursery, Delhi
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