Monday, May 08, 2006

Paulownia tomentosa/ Princess tree

I should get an award for the most "patient gardner". Sixteen years ago my brother gave me a tiny Paulownia tree start which he had ordered for a housewarming gift. He said it would grow fast and bloom clusters of purple blooms. Well, I waited and waited each year for the purple blooms. Each spring I would watch the tree for any sign of a bloom. Each fall I would rake and clean the dozens of three foot wide leaves it shed. The leaves were prehistoric looking and provided wonderful shade for my man made "beach" area. This is the only reason it had not been cut earlier. Last year I decided I would give it one more chance. The cleaning of the leaves were getting to be too much along with my other garden area. Yesterday morning while brushing my teeth I glanced out the window of my second story bath and a pale color in the tree caught my eye. I ran downstairs foaming at the mouth and forgetting my shoes, I stood at the foot of the "doomed" tree in amazement. There at the top of the tree were several trumpet shaped, pale lavender blooms. I wanted to cry from excitement. I ran in to get my camera. My poor husband probably thought I had finally lost it as he sat on the couch with confusion on his face. I took pictures as if I were photographing my childs' first steps. I can rest now, knowing the tree is not a "dud", but a late bloomer, just like me.


  1. What a beautiful many lessons in it, too!
    The flowers indeed look so rare...and I am wondering what color those 3 foot leaves turn in the fall!

  2. Sometimes the late bloomers bring the most beauty to those around them...

  3. What a wonderful surpise after waiting so long. I love the name Purple Princess Tree too. It will be lovely im full bloom. Please post another photo when she's in full bloom?


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