A large shrub or small tree, Albizia julibrissin is native to Iran to Japan. It is a fast-growing plant whose seedlings can become invasive. It can be seen growing in the wild in the southeastern U.S. and California in waste places, fields, and along roads.
However, its bipinnate, ferny leaves and fluffy pink flowerheads that cover the tree in summer make it a garden-worthy plant, as do the fragrance emitted by the flowers, which attract bees. Seed pods that resemble flat beans follow the flowers and persist into winter. Still, care should be used so that seeds from garden plants can’t escape into the wild.
Noteworthy CharacteristicsDomed form when mature. Filigree leaves and powder puff, fragrant flowers. Can be invasive.
CareIndoors, grow in full light with shade from hot sun. Water freely and fertilize monthly during active growth. Water sparingly in winter. In the garden, grow in poor or moderately fertile soil with good drainage in full sun.
PropagationSoak seed in warm water for 24 hours and then sow in spring at 59°F or warmer. Root semi-ripe cuttings with bottom heat in summer; take root cuttings in winter.
ProblemsIndoors: spider mites and whiteflies. Fungi may cause dieback and galls. Outdoors, they are prone to vascular wilts.
- Genus : Albizia
- Plant Width : 10 to 15 feet
- Plant Height : 15 to 30 feet
- Zones : 6, 7, 8, 9
- Growth Rate : Fast
- Characteristics : Fragrant Flowers, Showy Foliage
- Light : Full Sun
- Moisture : Medium Moisture
- Maintenance : Moderate
- Flower Color : Pink
- Plant Type : Shrubs
- Bloom Time : Summer
- Plant Seasonal Interest : Summer Interest
Plant Characteristics are only available to Fine Gardening members
Sign up for a free trial and get instant access to our complete plant guide as well as our entire collection of articles and videos.