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Tool Talk Discussion Forum

Re: OT What kind of tree is this

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10-23-2013 11:27:58

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Catalpa (northern species) does well and transplants easily in Minnesota. I have several of them toward the back of my property, most started from seed. They do grow quickly but seem longer-lived than most fast-growing trees (e.g., poplar, willow). While some consider it a junk tree, I think the catalpa is beautiful -- exotic-looking foliage and attractive, fragrant white-yellow-purple blossoms in early to mid summer (had one still blooming in August this year); the flower shape reminds me of huge snapdragon blooms. The tree can branch off in all sorts of twists and turns and angles. The wood has a yellowish tinge and can be used to create unique "things," from knife handles to turned bowls to furniture. Yes, the seed pods can be a nuisance, the big leaves even more so, but they mulch easily and work well in an area where they're sort of out of the way and the debris doesn't matter. FWIW, it doesn't seem to lose branches in storms, and the deer don't seem to relish the bark (but rabbits will nip the lower branches when young). IMO, the catalpa is much less hassle than black walnuts! I think the unique tropical look of the tree is worth the small nuisance. Be aware the tree tends to be late to leaf out in the spring, far later than most species. Don't cut it down as dead unless you've given it a good chance to get its leaves. Often one part of the tree will get leaves and blossoms days or even weeks before other parts. All in all it's a neat tree if you can tolerate the leaves and pods.

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10-24-2013 03:08:05

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 Re: OT What kind of tree is this in reply to rossowmn, 10-23-2013 11:27:58  
I plan on keeping this tree for awhile. It is growing on a high area that will one day be lowered. I will try and start a couple more of these trees else where on my property. I kind of like there flowery look and they are different. I have never seen another like it in the area. But the seed came from somewhere, most likely close.

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