Virginia Tech Dendrology

dragon tree Scrophulariaceae Paulownia fortunei (Seem.) Hemsl. Listen to the Latin symbol: --
Leaf: Opposite, simple, heart-shaped, 5 to 8 inches long, typically quite velvety, green above and paler below. Leaves on younger trees will often be shallowly lobed.
Flower: Large, showy, upright clusters, creamy white to pale lavender; individual tube-like flowers are 1 1/2 to 2 inches long, very fragrant, appearing in mid-spring.
Fruit: Oval capsule, 1 to 1 1/2 inches long, filled with numerous (1,000s) small seeds; capsules initially sticky and green, later turning brown and dry, persistent.
Twig: Stout, light brown, numerous light lenticels, leaf scar nearly circular, bundle scars arranged in a circle, pith is hollow in the second year, terminal bud lacking, lateral buds small.
Bark: Thin, grayish brown with shallow fissures.
Form: Rounded crown, heavy, clumsy branches, reaches 70 feet tall, 2 feet in diameter.
Looks like: royal paulownia - southern catalpa - northern catalpa
leaf flower twig bark form1 map
Additional Range Information: Paulownia fortunei is planted in the USDA hardiness zones shown above and is not known to widely escape cultivaton.

All material © 2017 Virginia Tech Dept. of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation; Photos and text by: John Seiler, Edward Jensen, Alex Niemiera, and John Peterson