Katsura Tree

Cercidiphyllum japonicum Siebold & Zucc. – Cercidiphyllaceae – katsura family

The katsura tree is an Asian species that is uncommon in Albion.  The leaves are heart-shaped and superficially resemble those of the native redbud.  However, the katsura tree has opposite leaves (two leaves are opposite each other at each region of leaf attachment – see photos) while the redbud has alternate leaves (only one leaf at each region of leaf attachment).

Katsura trees flower in early spring and the flowers are inconspicuous (see photos). Redbuds flower a bit later and have showy red buds and beautiful pink flowers that appear a week or two later then those of the katsura.  Also, redbuds tend to have a longer ‘drip tip’ on the end of each leaf.  See the entry for redbud, which is linked above.