I Love Golden Rain Tree

Aug 19, 2016 | Love This!

Name: Koelreuteria paniculata – aka the golden rain tree

Type of Plant: A fairly fast growing shade tree, hardy in zone 6-9, that’s known for nice round shape, delicate yellow flowers in the summer and ornamental pods from late-summer through the fall.

Why I love this: This is a medium sized tree – it grows to about 25 feet high and wide over time. It’s fairly drought tolerant and it flowers at a time of year when most trees aren’t in bloom. But best of all are the lantern-like pods that start to form even as the plant is flowering. They are both attractive and fun. This is a nice tree for near houses, patios and as a vertical element in a garden.

A Word to the Wise:  Don’t confuse this tree with the golden chain tree – which isn’t, in my plant geek’s opinion, not as nice a plant. Here’s how you remember it: rain is good, chains, not so good.

First are the yellow flowers and even as those begin to fade the seed pods form. A great combo against the blue early-August sky.

First are the yellow flowers and even as those begin to fade the seed pods form. A great combo against the blue early-August sky.

This plant was the parent of the tree now growing as Poison Ivy Acres. My friends, Dave and Judy Rogers, sited this tree beautifully in their yard and shared a seedling with me a few years ago.

This plant was the parent of the tree now growing as Poison Ivy Acres. My friends, Dave and Judy Rogers, sited this tree beautifully in their yard and shared a seedling with me a few years ago.

The seed pods are so much fun. They start out green with a tinge of purple, and later turn tan. LOVE them.

The seed pods are so much fun. They start out green with a tinge of purple, and later turn tan. LOVE them.

The pods just beg to have googly eyes added in Photoshop. Do you ever feel like you're being watched in the garden?

The pods just beg to have googly eyes added in Photoshop. Do you ever feel like you’re being watched in the garden?

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