Paulownia tomentosa Seeds Empress Tree
An elegant deciduous tree with blue–green, heart shaped / oval leaves that are somewhat fuzzy to the touch. Dazzling flowers cluster in a show of pale violet giving off a pleasant fragrance that can’t be resisted. Following this spring show is a fruit that dries full of seeds. The rough grey-brown bark is accented by olive colored stems that is sure to please the gardener year round!
1. Princess tree was introduced to the U.S. as an ornamental and landscape tree around 1840
2. It was first imported to Europe in the 1830's by the Dutch East India Company
3. The tree has since become naturalized in the eastern U.S. and is also grown on the west coast
4. Princess tree is native to western and central China where historical records describe its medicinal, ornamental, and timber uses as early as the third century B.C.
5. It was cultivated centuries ago in Japan where it is valued in many traditions
6. Recently it has also been grown in plantations and harvested for export to Japan where its wood is highly valued