Robinia pseudoacacia ‘Frisia’

golden false acacia

golden locust

  • © Richie Steffen / Great Plant Picks

  • © Richie Steffen / Great Plant Picks

Outstanding Qualities

The brilliant lemon-yellow leaves of golden locust are a beacon in the spring and summer landscape. The sunshine glow of this tree remains consistently bright from spring until fall. If placed in partial shade the foliage will be bright chartreuse. Each of its leaves is up to 12 inches long and composed of up to 23 oval leaflets. This creates bright shade beneath this lovely tree. In late spring and early summer, it produces hanging clusters of fragrant, pea-like, white flowers. It is a remarkably tough tree, growing vigorously in poor soil and in polluted urban conditions. It tolerates heavy clay soil if there is adequate drainage, and with little extra water it sails through Pacific Northwest summers, noted for their prolonged dry spells. The rugged branching pattern and deeply furrowed bark that develops on mature trees are picturesque.

Quick Facts

Plant Type: tree

Foliage Type: deciduous

Plant Height: 25 ft. 0 in. (7.62 meters)

Plant Width/Spread: 15 ft. 0 in. (4.57 meters)

Plant Height-Mature: 50 ft. 0 in. (15.24 meters)

Plant Width-Mature: 30 ft. 0 in. (9.14 meters)

Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 9

Flower Color: white

Sun/Light Exposure: full sun or light to open shade

Water Requirements: drought tolerant once established

Colors & Combos

Great Color Contrasts: bronze, burgundy, gold

Great Color Partners: dark green, chartreuse

Culture Notes
Golden locust adapts readily to a wide range of soil types including sand and clay as long as the soil is well-drained. It will grow best in full sun, but will tolerate light or open shade. The foliage color will be brightest with full sun. Once established it is drought tolerant. Gardening beneath golden false acacia can cause root suckers; remove them as close to the underground root from which they sprout as possible.