The Q&A Archives: "Popcorn" trees

Question: Do you know the proper name for what is locally called a popcorn tree? It is covered with small white blooms in the spring before the leaves come out. In late May early June it produces long green(then brown)stringy(4-5") things from the end of the stems. These are not seeds as the seedling will have already sprouted(unless it takes a season to germinate) It readily reseeds itself. It grows taller than the houses and a seedling in one year can grow 5'+ in a season. One of my year olds is 6 1/2' tall and 5' wide. It loses it leaves in the winter and is one of the last to put on leaves in the spring.

Answer: The Catalpa is commonly called the 'popcorn' tree because of the clusters of white blooms it bears. Catalpa trees are well adapted to extremes of heat and cold and soils. They can grow 20-50 feet tall and make excellent shade trees.

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