Cercidiphyllum japonicum ‘Pendulum’ (sometimes sold as ‘Pendula’)

Common Name
Weeping Katsura Tree

Family
Cercidiphyllaceae (Katsura)

Tree or plant type / form
A top-grafted deciduous tree with a weeping form that features an irregular cascading canopy of pendulous branches dipping toward the ground.

Landscape Use
It makes an excellent specimen, understory tree or tree for a small space.  Its form makes it a great addition to a winter garden. Protection from strong winds and afternoon sun should be provided.

Season of interest and/or other ornamental feature(s)
Its foliage offers an array of color throughout the year. In spring, heart-shaped leaves emerge reddish-purple, changing to blue-green as they mature. In autumn the color display changes again as leaves turn a clear yellow or apricot color.  Some regard the dry, fallen leaves as having the scent of cotton candy or burnt sugar.

Mature Landscape Size 
Height: 15 to 25 feet, Spread: 15 to 25 feet in 20 years. 

Light exposure
Part sun to half shade.  Avoid full afternoon sun.

USDA Hardiness zones
4 – 8

Origin / Native locale
Cultivated variety (cultivar) of a species native to Eastern China and Japan

Wildlife Value (incl. pollinators)
Minimal

Soil Type & Drainage
Moist, well-drained soil; abhors excessively dry soil

Tolerances
Alkaline soil, Clay soil, Road salt, Wet sites

Leaf Description
Blue-green heart-shaped leaves bearing some similarity to redbud, the genus Cercis.  

Bloom Time in Northeast Ohio
Early to mid April

Flower Description
Katsura tree is a dioecious species, meaning that trees produce either all male or all female flowers. However, all forms of C. japonicum ‘Pendulum’ are male trees, exhibiting small reddish pink flowers of moderate ornamental value. 

Cone / Fruit
None

Available at
Secrest Arboretum Plant Discovery Days and selected local nurseries

Additional Information
Three additional weeping cultivars are worthy of consideration.  The first, ‘Morioka Weeping’ exhibits more upright growth than ‘Pendulum’ with strongly weeping lateral branches.  It is typically taller than wide at maturity.  Second, ‘Amazing Grace’ is strongly horizontal, and generally wider than tall at maturity.  Third, ‘Tidal Wave’ is a nearly prostrate (flat) form that can sprawl across sprawls along the ground.  These varieties are far less common in commerce than ‘Pendulum’ but can be obtained from specialty nurseries or occasionally at Secrest Arboretum Plant Discovery Days.


Use the Secrest Aboretum Explorer to find locations where this plant is located on the Wooster campus.


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