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Bauhinia x blakeana

Previously known as:

  • Perlebia x blakeana
Phonetic Spelling
boh-HIN-ee-uh blah-kee-AY-nuh
Description

This broadleaf specimen is a hybrid multitrunked semi-evergreen flowering tree that has an umbrella-like form along with an irregular crown.  Its large, orchid-like flowers come in a range of colors, from reddish to pink.  They range in size from 5"-6".  The gray-green foliage is somewhat deciduous, although its deciduous nature will take place later than expected.  It grows best in full sun in a variety of soil types.  Good drainage is important.  Best to protect from frost as the foliage can become damaged.  It will not survive a cold, hard, extended frost.  Plant in a location where it can be protected from cold winds.  

When young, prune the tree at regular intervals.  This will help to achieve a more uniform crown as the tree ages.  

This sterile hybrid is not propagated from seed, there are no seed pods on the plant.  Propagation can only be accomplished by cuttings, layering, or grafting onto seedlings of one of the parent species.  All existing plants are descendants of hybrids cultivated at the Hong Kong Botanical Gardens.  The lack of seed pods makes this tree more desirable than others that drop their pods and require clean-up.  

Tends to grow as a multi-stemmed/trunked plant, however, it can be trained to be a single-trunked specimen.  If allowed to grow as a multi-trunk tree, as the tree ages, it may be susceptible to breakage at the crotch.  

Surface roots are rarely a problem.

This plant may be confused with Bauhinia purpurea.

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  Chinese rose beetle may damage the leaves.  As the tree ages, the limbs tend to droop, which may require pruning to allow clearance under the canopy.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#evergreen#showy flowers#semi-evergreen#winter interest
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#evergreen#showy flowers#semi-evergreen#winter interest
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Bauhinia
    Species:
    x blakeana
    Family:
    Fabaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Grafting
    Layering
    Leaf Cutting
    Root Cutting
    Stem Cutting
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Hong Kong
    Dimensions:
    Height: 12 ft. 0 in. - 20 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 20 ft. 0 in. - 25 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Tree
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Habit/Form:
    Horizontal
    Multi-trunked
    Growth Rate:
    Rapid
    Maintenance:
    Medium
    Texture:
    Coarse
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Alkaline (>8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Available Space To Plant:
    6-feet-12 feet
    12-24 feet
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    9b, 10b, 10a, 11b, 11a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Type:
    Legume
    Fruit Description:
    Flattened seed pods
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Pink
    Purple/Lavender
    Red/Burgundy
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Long Bloom Season
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Fall
    Spring
    Winter
    Flower Petals:
    4-5 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    > 6 inches
    Flower Description:
    Large, 5"-6" rose-purple-crimson showy flowers bloom when little else in the garden is blooming.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Orbicular
    Leaf Margin:
    Lobed
    Hairs Present:
    No
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Dark Brown
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Recreational Play Area
    Landscape Theme:
    Winter Garden
    Design Feature:
    Accent
    Flowering Tree
    Foundation Planting
    Shade Tree
    Specimen
    Street Tree