Well known for its pea-like flowers that bloom along the trunks, Cercis canadensis is a native understory tree. Prized for its bright colors coming out of the winter, Eastern Redbud holds a special place in the landscape. George Washington was a big fan and even transplanted seeds from redbuds he admired in the forest into his own garden. It’s heart-shaped leaves get eaten up by leafcutter bees leaving behind perfectly circular bites.
The ‘Flame Thrower’ Redbud, developed by the JC Raulston Arboretum at North Carolina State University has unique leaves that vary in shades of green and burgundy displayed together at the same time. Flowers are reddish-purple to pink and extremely showy in early spring before the foliage develops.