Orchid Tree

Names Hong Kong Orchid
Scientific Name Bauhinia blakeana
Uses Specimen or avenue, whereever a small to mediu tree is needed with winter color
Cold Hardiness Not cold hardy. Freezes at 30 degrees
Light Needs Full sun or high shifting pine shade
Flower Color Rose-Purple brilliant 6in flowers
Blooms October-March
Water Needs Drought torerant once established
Leaves Simple, medium green
Mature Height Up to 20-40ft with 20-30ft spread
Growth Rate Fast
Hong Kong Orchid
Hong Kong Orchid – Enlarge

The captivating orchid tree is one of the most beautiful blooming specimen trees available in Miami.

As its name suggests, this tree’s signature characteristic is its yearly display of three- to five-inch wide scented flowers, light lavender to purple in hue with white and yellow accents. The blooms have narrow, rippled and overlapping petals that resemble orchid blossoms.

The orchid tree is fast growing. Slender central trunks produce a multitude of large greenish-gray doubled leaves on a rounded or vase-shaped crown. Orchid trees can reach 35 feet in height with an equal spread.

The orchid tree thrives in full sun and well-drained soils. Exceptionally drought-tolerant and moderately resistant to salt, a dry environment will not affect flowering. The tender wood of the orchid tree is somewhat susceptible to wind, so it should be planted in sheltered areas. Useful as a shade tree on sunny lawns, the unobtrusive root pattern makes the orchid tree desirable as a parkway tree as well.

In late summer to early fall the tree bursts into vibrant bloom with multiple flowers appearing simultaneously in clusters around the crown. This stunning and sweetly scented flowering tree conveys the beauty of the tropics with a spectacular show of seasonal color.