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Plants from the Ground Up

Evodia the beekeepers friend!

The Evodia tree is known as the Bee bee tree—and with good reason! The fragrant and nectar rich flowers appear in July and August when many other ‘honey’ plants have bloomed out. Planting an Evodia tree gives bees a wonderful forage tree for late summer. The Bee bee tree isn’t just for bees, it makes a fine ornamental tree for the garden as well.

Evodia Flower

Evodia trees typically reach 15-25′ in the garden but can reach as high as 50′, they have a rounded to spreading habit and reach 20-30′ wide. I like that they do not create too dense of a canopy, casting light shade that can easily be planted with understory shrubs and perennials. The Bee bee tree features 9-15″ long pinnately compound dark-green leaves that are oppositely arranged on delicate branches. Evodia are dioecious, meaning that they are either male or female plants. In late summer, masses of flat white fragrant flower clusters appear and bring in pollinators in droves. August to November finds the female trees covered in unusual and showy bright pink-red seed capsules which burst open to show thousands of tiny black seeds (two per capsule). The seeds are a much-loved snack of birds. In Autumn Evodia trees are a lovely sight with their glowing yellow fall color. Even in winter, these trees have interest with their smooth grey bark and picturesque form, they will form a multi-branched tree if left to their own devices, or can be easily trained to form a single trunk.

Evodia Seed     Evodia Fall Color

These beautiful trees are native to Korea and are part of the Rutacaea family (that also includes Citrus). Evodia have no major pest or disease issues and are adaptable to most soil conditions and once established they are quite drought-resistant. For best performance, the Bee bee tree requires a site with full sun. Evodia can be propagated by seed or cuttings. Hardy to USDA zone 4

For more photos and information, see Evodia (tedradium) daniellii at the Forestfarm Store.

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