SelecTree: Tree Detail
Photo Locations: Leaning Pine Arboretum - Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, CA, Cal Poly State University - San Luis Obispo, CA, Santa Barbara Botanic Garden, Los Angeles County Arboretum - Arcadia, CA and UC Santa Cruz Arboretum - Santa Cruz, CA
Utility friendly tree.
Western Redbud is a commonly used native shrub, commonly found in riparian canyons. It is usually sold as a multi-trunk shrub, rather than a single trunk tree standard, but can be trained into either a single or multi-trunk tree, where it is effective as a flowering accent. It tolerates dry conditions, but exhibits more vigorous, lush growth with regular deep watering. It blooms best in full sun. Otherwise, it is quite reliable once established, except for occasional tent caterpillar attacks, which can be controlled with spraying. It is resistant to oak root fungus.
Native to California foothills, Arizona, and Utah.
A Cercis occidentalis in Santa Rosa is registered as a California Big Tree. It measures 45 feet high, with a trunk circumference of 71 inches and a crown spread of 38 feet.
Erect or Spreading with a Low Canopy.
Rounded or Umbrella Shape.
Has Deciduous foliage.
Height: 10 - 20 feet.
Width: 10 - 20 feet.
Growth Rate: 24 to 36 Inches per Year.
Longevity 40 to 150 years.
Leaves Round, Blue Green, Gray Green or Medium Green, Red, Gold or Multicolored, Deciduous.
Flowers Showy. Purple. Flowers in Spring. Has perfect flowers (male and female parts in each flower).
Prolific, Brown or Purple Pod, Large (1.50 - 3.00 inches), fruiting in Summer or Fall.
Bark Dark Brown or Red Brown, Scaly.
Shading Capacity Rated as Moderate in Leaf.
Shading Capacity Rated as Moderate out of Leaf.
Litter Issue is Dry Fruit.
Tree Site Conditions & Constraints
Sunset Zones 2 - 24.
USDA Hardiness Zones 7 - 9.
Exposure Full Sun to Partial Shade.
Moist to Dry Soil.
Clay, Loam or Sand Texture.
Highly Acidic to Highly Alkaline Soil pH.
Seaside Tolerance is Good in Mild Zone.
Pests & Disease Information
Resistant to Armillaria. Susceptible to Caterpillars and Scales, Crown Rot, Phytophthora and Root Rot.
Health, Safety & Environmental Concerns
Branch Strength Rated as Medium.
Root Damage Potential Rated as Low.
None Known Health Hazard.
Biogenic Emissions considered Low.
Fire Resistance is Favorable.
Desirable Wildlife Plant.
Special Uses & Values
Cite this tree:
SelecTree. "Cercis occidentalis Tree Record." 1995-2020. Apr 6, 2020.
< https://selectree.calpoly.edu/tree-detail/cercis-occidentalis >
SelecTree Nursery Connection Map
Cal Poly / ESRI