The main reasons why I chose this tree were:
- small (3m tall x 2m wide)
- hardy once established
- deciduous with bright yellow autumn foliage
- heart-shaped green leaves
- masses of showy pink flowers in spring
- leguminous (nitrogen fixing)
My specimen was purchased from Dawson's Nursery in Forrestfield and comes from Flemings (http://www.flemings.com.au/topten_details.asp?CULT_ID=CERCAVON). I chose a plant with a strong, central leader to help with training to a single trunk. Here's an idea of what a more mature plant could look like:
Sept 2010 (sub-mulch irrigation is awaiting more mulch!!)
Here's Mr. Buddy straight after planting. I removed the lowest branch as it was rubbing against the next highest one, and pruned the rather-leggy shoots back to just above a more proximal node to shape. My soil is well-drained (Perth sandy soils) and enriched with organic matter.
Approximately 8 months after planting. The tree was given a big thinning-out prune halfway through summer to help cope with the dryness and very strong winds, which were causing the tree to grow in the direction of the prevailing winds. Both side branches were removed in autumn to train to a single trunk in preparation for next spring.
Proving to be quite hardy and fast growing in an unsheltered north-facing position. The tree did very well over the Perth summer drought (60 days with no rain, 2 days of dripper irrigation only), with only some of the leaves going brown and dead (and I think that this was more due to our hot, dry Easterlies which were very strong this year).