Columnar Tulip Tree

Botanical Name: Liriodendron tulipifera ‘Fastigiata’

Alternate Name: Liriodendron tulipifera ‘Arnold’, Arnold Tulip Tree

The Arnold Tulip Tree or Columnar Tulip Tree (Liriodendron tulipifera ‘Fastigiata’) is a narrower variety of Liriodendron tulipifera, the tallest deciduous tree in the United States. The slimmer version of this stately and unusual Tulip Tree is very useful and can be planted in smaller landscapes and narrow locations. This tree can also be planted in groups or lining driveways to great effect.

The tree is columnar with an upward growth habit. It can form a tear-drop shape as it matures. The Columnar Tulip Tree grows to a height of 50 feet and a width of 10-15 feet.

Its botanical name ‘Tulipifera’ refers to the stunning flowers that look somewhat like tulip flowers. They are about 2 inches in height and can be hidden by the leaves, since they bloom after the leaves have developed in late spring or early summer. The blooms are a stunning chartreuse yellow with a band of orange at the base of each petal. The flowers stand erect on the branches. The Columnar Tulip Tree is in the Magnolia family and the blooms are somewhat similar to some Cup and Saucer Magnolia blooms.

The leaves of the Columnar Tulip Tree are unique. They have 4 lobes with a notched flat end and are mid-green and glossy. In autumn, the tree puts on a lovely, golden yellow foliage display.

This tree is rabbit and deer resistant. Avoid planting where harsh winds can scorch the leaves.

Height: 40-50 ft.

Width: 10-15 ft.

Shape: Columnar

Flower Color: Green, Orange

Flowering Time: May-June

Fall Color: Bright Yellow

Features: Bright fall color, showy flowers, interesting foliage

Exposure: Full Sun to Part Shade

Watering: Moderate & Regular. Do not over water. Drought tolerant once established.

Soil: Prefers rich, moist, well-drained loam soil, slightly acidic or neutral pH. Tolerates clay.

Growth Rate: Fast

USDA Zones: 5-9

Uses: Accent tree, street tree, lining walkways or driveways, screening tree, foundation tree

Similar Trees: Tulip Tree (Liriodendron tulipifera), Elizabeth Magnolia (Magnolia x 'Elizabeth'), Galaxy Magnolia (Magnolia x 'Galaxy'), Daybreak Magnolia (Magnolia 'Daybreak'), Moonglow Magnolia (Magnolia virginiana 'Jim Wilson'), Yellow Bird Magnolia (Magnolia x brooklynensis 'Yellow Bird')

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