Botanical Name: Cercis canadensis
Other Common Names: Eastern Redbud
Brief Description and Notes: It is easy to identify this tree in the springtime, as you’ll see the beautiful pink buds appearing before the leaves. It is a common street tree in Philadelphia and is also native to the region. The buds are pretty, delicious, and healthy. Later in the season you’ll find the alternate heart-shaped leaves and bean-like seedpods.
Where To Look For It: Well-draining, fertile soil; edges of wood and stream banks; lawns and public parks; sun to part-shade
Ornamental Value: Stunning landscape specimen for early spring color; umbrella-shaped crown; 15-30 ft. height
Ecological Value & Roles: Excellent for native pollinators; provides shelter and nesting site/materials for other wildlife
Edibility and Other Human Use: Pink buds are high in Vitamin C; slightly crunchy and lemony/sour, great addition raw or cooked to spring rolls, salads, etc. Young seeds pods can be cooked or pickled as well. Seeds from dried or toughened pods can be roasted for excellent source of protein.
Featured Header Photo by Victoria Moyer