Trees of Colorado: The Golden Raintree
If you want a medium-sized, lush feature tree to plant on a lawn, the Golden Raintree (also known as the Goldenrain) may be the tree for you. This East Asian native grows to about 30 feet with a spread roughly equal to its height. Its thick leaf canopy consists of clusters of 7-15 bright green finger-length leaflets with serrated edges. You'll be rewarded in early summer with hundreds of fragrant, flamboyant yellow flowers through early July followed by lantern-shaped pods that give the tree an exotic look all summer long.
Hardy, Healthy, Pest-Free and Drought-Tolerant
The Golden Raintree is a hardy, healthy tree that tolerates drought, sun scorch, and alkaline soils and wide temperature fluctuations up to Zone 8, making it an ideal choice for landscapes along Colorado's Front Range at altitudes up to about 6,000 feet. The tree itself is pest-free, but red-shouldered bugs similar to boxelder bugs are attracted to the immature seeds in its pods. While they can be a nuisance, they don't damage the tree.
Ideal Lawns for Planting
While the Goldenrain can be a striking tree in a xeriscape, it drops a lot of seeds that may take root and sprout, adding some effort to preventing unwanted "volunteers." The best choice for low-maintenance planting is in a lawn area where the dense grass and frequent mowing will prevent the seedlings from developing.
Its relatively small size makes planting it in open lawns preferable, but Goldenrains can be placed along pavement or in parking strips as long as they can be set back enough to avoid tall vehicles. The tree's wood is relatively weak, too, so heavy snow loads can cause its branches to break.
Choosing the Right Goldenrain Tree for Your Landscape
There are several cultivars of the Goldenrain, so be sure to do your research and choose the one that's right for your landscape. For more information on cultivating a Goldenrain tree in the greater Front Range area, call us at: 303-623-8733. Donovan Arborists offers consulting, new tree planting and environmentally-responsible maintenance to keep it healthy for years to come.