Burgundy Hearts Redbud Cercis canadensis ‘Greswan’


“Did you see my redbud?  It is gorgeous this year!”  And it was.  I snapped a photo of it immediately.

That day at my client’s home, she showed me her redbud tree in her backyard next to her back deck.  I’ve always liked this tree because of its unique flowering pattern that runs the line of every branch giving it an asian feel.  The flowers appear in spring before the leaves expand.  And the foliage is heart shaped. ‘Forest Pansy’ is a common favorite to point out to folks at the nursery because not only are the flowers beautiful, the color of the heart-shape leaves are plum-ish versus the traditional green.

New redbuds (Cercis canadensis) cultivars are coming out of the woodwork more often it seems.  Another one that caught my eye recently at a tradeshow was Burgundy Hearts® Redbud (Cercis canadensis ‘Greswan’).  The leaves are a tad bit larger and are a wine-red color, a bit lighter than ‘Forest Pansy’.  In early spring, the rosy-purple, pea-shaped flowers expand around March-April timeframe, before the leaves.  Hummingbirds and bees enjoy the early welcome as spring awakens their senses and our’s.  And this new introduction, ‘Greswan’, is noted for proven resistance to summer leaf sorch better than my former best on my list ‘Forest Pansy’.

Smaller trees tend to be my favorite in the landscape.  Burgundy Hearts® Redbud grows to about 20-25 feet at maturity.  It is fast growing and native.  In the late summer to fall, the red-purple color to the leaves transition to a more wine-red burgundy color.  It is cold hardy to zone 5 and heat tolerant to zone 8.  Place it in a full to partial sun location and let your heart begin to pound with love!

If you tend to like a hotter and warmer color to your landscape, another option in the redbud world is Cercis canadensis ‘JN2’, known as The Rising Sun™ Redbud.  It is a new introduction with brilliant, golden yellow to orange colored leaves.  It has a full, round shape and holds its color into fall.  The pea-like shaped flowers are a rosy-orchid color.  Another feature that makes this one a bit more unique to the rest of the redbuds is the bark – it has a yellow tinge to it.  The size of this one is even a bit better for smaller areas.  It reaches 12 feet at maturity. 

The Rising Sun™ Redbud is a vigorous grower and also a native ornamental tree.  It is cold hardy to zones 5-8 and appreciates full sun locations.  I can’t think of anything about these plants that are a downfall, other than if I don’t plant one soon, I may die of a broken redbud heart!  I vow to incorporate some more flowering trees in my landscape this spring, and hope to locate these beauties on the scene.  I hope you will too!  Cathy T

Finally located the photo I took of the redbud at my client’s home, here it is!

Redbud Blooms

2 thoughts on “Burgundy Hearts Redbud Cercis canadensis ‘Greswan’

  1. Would you plant a redbud tree in the front yard as the only tree? Do you prefer Burgundy Hearts Redbud or The Rising Sun? Are they both hardy enough for a zone 5a (West Des Moines, Iowa)? Thank you.

    • First, I certainly would plant it as a single tree in the yard – anywhere so long as you look at the exposure (sun/shade) and make sure your variety is well suited for the conditions you have. As far as which, I am not sure, probably Burgundy Hearts. As far as hardy, check with your local nursery in your area but I believe so. Thank you for writing today! Cathy T.

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