Cassia fistula

Golden Shower Tree, Indian Laburnum

A medium-sized tree renowned for its 'shower' of stunning golden flowers.

Features: Profuse golden flowers in late spring.
Applications: Feature tree, residential street or lawn tree in suitable climates.
Description Native to the tropical and subtropical regions of India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, the fast-growing Golden Shower is used as an ornamental planting, while group plantings can offer particular effect when the tree is in bloom. Being variously deciduous, the loss of its leaves heralds the coming of its late-spring flowers, which arrive in pendulous clusters loosely similar to the hanging bundles of a Wisteria but yellow-gold in colour. While the tree will thrive in full sun in moist, well-drained soils, it enjoys humidity and is drought tolerant. It is however, regarded as being very susceptible to frost. Categorisation is often unreliable and sometimes contradictory, with both Cassia and the very closely related Senna (both under Cassieae) being frequently described interchangeably.
Availability: Currently unavailable
Mature height: 8-15
Mature spread: 5-10
Canopy: Loosely irregular, domed. Moderate to dense shade (seasonal).
Growth rate: Fast
Cautions: Seeds are poisonous. Susceptible to frost. May not flower in first few years.
Tolerances: Hardy and drought tolerant when established. Variety of soil types and conditions. Handles humidity.
Sun demands: Plant in full sun but can tolerate some shade.
Soil demands: Any well-drained soils - acidic to alkaline
Water demands: Low-Medium. Avoid long-term dry sites.
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Native or Exotic: Exotic
Leaf habit: Typically deciduous
Family: Fabaceae
Cassia fistula image 1
Cassia fistula image 2

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Additional references and recommended reading:

Boland, D. J. et al (2006) "Forest Trees of Australia" 5th Edition, Australia: CSIRO Publishing.

Gilman, Edward F. (1997) "Trees for Urban and Suburban Landscapes", Florida: Delmar Cengage Learning.

Lorenz von Ehren "Von Ehren Manual" 2nd Edition, Hamburg.

Rushforth, K. (2001) "Easy Tree Guide, Britain and Europe", London: Aurum Press.

Urban Forests Ecosystems Institute, "SelecTree - A Tree Selection Guide" retrieved from 2009.

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