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Persian Silk Tree 50-80 cm (Albizia julibrissin)

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  • $32.00
  • Regular price $43.00
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1 Persian Silk Tree: 2 years old - current height 50-80 cm

Common names: Silk Tree, Persian Silk Tree, Pink Silk Tree, Tree of Happiness, Mimosa
Scientific name:
Albizia julibrissin
Family: Fabaceae

Plant history & use:

The silk tree is a striking tree whose origin can be traced to the area around Iran & Azerbaijan through China, to Korea. The tree is characterized by its fluffy, bright pink flowers that resemble a silky feather crown. Its beauty has made it a prized tree all over the world.

The silk tree has also been used for its edible and medicinal properties for centuries. Young leaves are eaten as a vegetable - boiled or steamed. They are described as having an aromatic taste. Even flowers are boiled for consumption. A historically known kitchen plant in its home regions.

The plant's bark, leaves and flowers & flower buds are used to make teas and extracts with reputed health benefits. Flowers are harvested at opening and the bark is harvested in spring or late summer to be dried for later consumption.

Tea made from flowers is said to have a delicate, sweet flavor and relieve stress, tension and even minor depression. It is probably one of the reasons why the tree is also called "The Tree of Happiness". Please decide for yourself if this is right for you.

You can also make gel from recently bloomed flowers.

In traditional Asian medicine, it has been used, among other things, to calm nerves and as a mild sedative for sleep disorders.

Flowers have been observed to be effective in attracting bees & butterflies (as well as hummingbirds in America).

This tree, like other plants in the pea family (Fabaceae), cooperates with soil bacteria which bind nitrogen from the air and fix it to the tree's roots. In this way, the plant area is supplied all around with nitrogen that would otherwise have been inaccessible to the vegetation - that is why we call plants that have such a cooperation precisely Land improvers .

The wood is also used to make furniture.

Culture:

The silk tree can be grown outdoors in the more favorable locations in Sweden (roughly from Uppsala and southward according to plant zones). However, the tree must be hardy down to -25 °C, so geographical location is as often ambiguous and success largely depends on the actual plant location. T thrives best in warm and sunny places - a good place is in a sheltered position against a south wall.

Young shoots can be sensitive to cold and frost. Please protect the tree during the winter if you grow outdoors, for example with straw around the base and wind protection in the form of fiber cloth attached to stakes around the tree if it is in an exposed position. This probably only needs to be done the first winter after purchasing these 2-year-old trees.

The silk tree can otherwise be grown in a pot that is protected over the winter.

The silk tree is a fast-growing tree with a relatively low water requirement that can stand in direct sun. The tree prefers well-drained soil and moderate irrigation. Specifically: water a lot and infrequently, to encourage a higher growth rate. Fairly drought tolerant.

Resistant to pruning. Can be shaped to grow next to a house wall, for example. Pruning is done in late winter or early spring.

Characteristics:

Age: Perennial
Plant position: sun
Height: 5-7 m
Growing zone: 1-4