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14. Eastern Redbud
Almost immediately after it was planted on the Winona State University campus, the Eastern Redbud (Cercis canadensis) began to bloom. While some trees wait several years to mature and begin blooming, the Redbud, also called the Judas Tree, is a small tree which begins blooming when very young.
In early spring, before any leaves appear, the tree becomes a mass of lavender. The flowers are found in numerous clusters along twigs, branches, and even along the trunk. Because of its early, small and plentiful blooms, the Redbud can be mistaken for a purple flowering Crabapple. However, a Crabapple and most other flowering trees bloom from the tips of the twigs. The flowers of the Redbud are followed by thin heart-shaped leaves, which turn bright yellow in fall.
The Redbud is a small tree, almost never growing to a height of more than 30 feet. The Redbud is native to Midwestern and eastern North America from Canada to the southern states, but this far north it is marginally hardy and can be damaged easily by harsh winters. Interestingly, early American settlers used Redbud blooms in salads and the blooms are still considered a delicacy in Mexico.
On the Winona State University campus, an Eastern Redbud can be found just west of the main entrance on the north side of Minné Hall. A second Redbud is located in the WSU Meditation Garden located at the southeast corner of the Performing Arts Center.
(see #16 on the maps)
Last Modified: Thursday, May 08, 2008 13:59 by