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Firmiana simplex
Firmiana simplex

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Zone
Zones 5, 6, 8, 9, 12-31, 33
Full SunPartial Sun
Full, Partial
Regular Water
Moderate

Firmiana simplex

Chinese Parasol Tree
Sterculiaceae
Deciduous, Trees

Native to China and Japan. Slow growing to 15–30 ft. tall and half as wide, with smooth, light gray-green bark. Trunk is often unbranched for 4–5 ft. before dividing into three or more slender, upright, slightly spreading branches that carry lobed, tropical-looking, 1-ft. leaves. Each stem looks as if it could be cut off and carried away as a parasol.

The tree bears large, loose, upright clusters of greenish white flowers at branch ends in summer. Fruit looks like a green pea pod opened out flat, with seeds on the pod margins. Leafless for a long period in winter (unusual for such a tropical-looking tree). Tolerates all soil types. Does well in patios and courtyards protected from wind. Good near swimming pools.

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