Eastern Redbud

All About the Eastern Redbud:

Scientific Nomenclature: Cercis canadensis

Common Names: Eastern redbud, American judas-tree

Mature Height: 20–25 feet

Mature Spread: 20–30 feet

Growth Rate: Moderate

Attracts Wildlife: Butterflies, hummingbirds and small mammals

Messiness: Eastern redbuds will drop seed pods and leaves in autumn.

Shape: Round

Native to Kentucky: Yes

Preferred Soils: The tree is adaptable but prefers moist, well-drained clay, loam or sandy soils with high organic matter content. It has no preference over whether the soil is acidic (<6.0pH), neutral (6.0–8.0pH) or alkaline (>8.0pH).

Screening: Redbuds are not typically used for screening or privacy, though they’re often planted in rows as a border tree.

Drought Tolerance: Does not tolerate heat or drought well.

Coniferous or Deciduous: Deciduous

Pruning: Eastern redbuds should be pruned to maintain both their appearance and their health. Regular pruning of dead branches will keep the tree at its healthiest. Redbuds also tend to lose their graceful form over time as they become more densely packed with newer, smaller limbs. Regular pruning to remove excess foliage and branches should be done to help maintain its shape.

Climate Quick Facts:

Following being planted as a sapling, over 20 years one Eastern redbud will:

  • Sequester ~431 pounds of CO2.
  • Reduce stormwater runoff by 260 gallons.