Scientific Name: Cercis canadensis ‘JN2’ The Rising Sun
Height: 20-30 ft
Spread: 25-35 ft
Bloom Time: May
Crown Density: Moderate Density
Native Range: East Coast North America, Pennsylvania
Ecological Value: Larval host for several species of caterpillar including Henry’s Elfin butterlfly.
Human Value: Flowers can be eaten raw, cooked, or pickled. Ours have a pleasant, slightly sweet lemony flavor. Bean pods are also edible as are the seeds.
I bought our tree for $20.00 from the sale lot of Home Depot on a baking late July day in 2016. She has had a hard life, losing her leader on the way home in the car and having her tap root cut as I tried to loosen her strangling root ball. Since then, she has grown gamely while regularly dropping branches in our increasingly wild storms. Her self-pruning does not seem to have weakened her, but it has kept her nice and small for incorporation into our hedge.