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Paulownia tomentosa
  • RHS AGM

foxglove tree

P. tomentosa is a broad, medium-sized deciduous tree with handsome ovate or shallowly-lobed leaves to 25cm in length. Fragrant, light lilac-purple flowers in large panicles. Fruits ovoid, thinly woody

Other common names
princess tree
Synonyms
Paulownia imperialis
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Size
Ultimate height
8–12 metres
Time to ultimate height
20–50 years
Ultimate spread
Wider than 8 metres
Growing conditions
Chalk
Clay
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Pink Purple Green
Summer Green
Autumn Green
Winter Brown
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

West–facing or East–facing or South–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Hardiness
H5
Botanical details
Family
Paulowniaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Genus

Paulownia are deciduous trees with large, ovate leaves and erect panicles of foxglove-like flowers in spring; they can also be coppiced for extra-large leaves at expense of flowers

Name status

Correct

Plant range
China, Korea

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How to grow

Cultivation

Grow in moist, humus-rich, fertile soils. Protect young trees from frost. Can be pollarded. Very tolerant of atmospheric pollution

Propagation

Propagate by seed sown in containers in a cold frame in autumn or spring. Seed germinates best if exposed to light. Seedlings must be protected from frost

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Flower borders and beds
Pruning

Pruning group 1 or Pruning group 7 for foliage effect

Pests

Generally pest free

Diseases

Generally trouble free

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