The park’s variety of Carolina silverbell is called the ‘UConn Wedding Bells’, because it was first found by Dr. Mark Brand, who introduced them at the University of Connecticut. A native of the Appalachian mountains, this tree provides interest to the park all year round.
In the late spring, hundreds of white bell-shaped flowers bloom from every branch of the tree, just as their young leaves begin to emerge. These blossoms attract multiple species of bees, which help to pollinate the park’s surrounding plants and fruit trees. After the flowers fall, the silverbell leafs out with attractive green foliage, then produces brown fruits that are quickly eaten by birds and squirrels. The silverbell’s leaves turn an attractive bright yellow in the fall, while its bark peels off in large, flat scales during winter.