Cladrastis kentukea


  • © - Ulf Eliasson

  • © Richie Steffen / Great Plant Picks

  • © Richie Steffen / Great Plant Picks

Synonyms: Cladrastis lutea

Outstanding Qualities

In late spring, yellowwood bursts forth with deliciously fragrant, white, wisteria-like blossoms that hang 6-10 inches in length. The brilliant bright green leaves are handsome all summer and then change to a clear golden yellow in autumn. It is easy to grow and has no serious pest or disease problems.

Quick Facts

Plant Type: tree

Foliage Type: deciduous

Plant Height: 10 ft. 0 in. (3.05 meters)

Plant Width/Spread: 8 ft. 0 in. (2.44 meters)

Plant Height-Mature: 40 ft. 0 in. (12.19 meters)

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

Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 8

Flower Color: white

Sun/Light Exposure: full sun

Water Requirements: occasional watering

Seasonal Interest: autumn color

Wildlife Associations: bees

Colors & Combos

Great Color Contrasts: gold, burgundy, bronze

Great Color Partners: white, silver, variegated

Culture Notes
Yellowwood grows best in rich well-drained soils, but will tolerate sandy sites and clay. Plant it in full sun to encourage good flowering and water occasionally during dry weather. Avoid planting where strong winds can damage the brittle branches. Very little pruning is needed for a good plant to develop.