Paulownia evergreen wood valuable tree

The habitus of paulownia

Paulownia is a deciduous tree which is indeciduous in tropical climate. The Paulownia tree is the fastest growing tree in the world. It characteristically has a very smooth bark with very noticeable lenticels.

These are pores which are typically created by the rupture of the outer cell layer. The pores allow tree to exchange gas with the surrounding air.

Paulownia has leaves that are arranged oppositely on the branches.  The leaves of Paulownia have a rather long stalk but only a simple lamina. The lamina is mostly unseparated and can occasionally have three to five lobes while being slightly corrugated.

Branches and leaves of Paulownia

The blossom of Paulownia is pyramidal or cylindrical. The blossoms hold three to five separate inflorescences. The blossoms are hermaphroditic and zygomorphic. They are rather big as they have a size of five to seven centimetres. Paulownia always has a total of five pilose sepals.

Mostly they are grown together in a campanulate way. Moreover, Paulownia has five petals. They are white or crimson in colour. They are bell-mouthed or tubular and most of the time grown together. The corolla of Paulownia is bilobate. Inside you can find four stamina.  The ovary is superior and bilocular.


Seeds and fruits

Paulownia owns capsular fruits. They have got four flaps which can only open in an incomplete way. Beneath the flaps you can find numerous seeds which are mostly winged.

Die Nutzung von Paulownia durch den Menschen

Paulownia wird durch den Menschen traditionell in unterschiedlichster Art und Weise genutzt. Die Art der Nutzung ist dabei nicht nur abhängig von der jeweiligen Art des Baumes, sondern vor allem auch vom Verbreitungsgebiet.
In den klimatisch günstigeren und daher wärmeren Regionen Japans, Europas und inzwischen auch Nordamerikas wird Paulownia traditionell als Zierpflanze verwendet. Jedoch wird er durchaus auch als sogenannter Nutzbaum geschätzt.
Hinsichtlich der kommerziellen Nutzung von Paulownia sind jedoch weniger die Früchte, stattdessen jedoch das Holz beliebt. Das Holz von Paulownia findet beispielsweise Verwendung beim Möbelbau und bei weiteren recht speziellen Anwendungen. So wird das Holz auch zur Produktion unterschiedlicher Musikinstrumente eingesetzt und bei der Fertigung moderner Surfboards genutzt.

Since 2012 Germany has been discovering the economic potential of the Paulownia tree. Since then Paulownia has been particularly cultivated over here. The economic target is clearly the production of timber.

Paulownia in heraldry

Meanwhile Paulownia is also well known in heraldry. Traditionally Paulownia was an inherent part of the Ashikaga-ruler’s emblem. The Ashikagas are a traditional Japanese noble clan. The family is one of Japan’s most famous noble houses and counts as source and origin for numerous designated dynasties. Today Paulownia is the emblem of the Japanese prime minister and also of the Japanese government. In Japan you can also find the 500-yen-coin displaying the blossoms of Paulownia.

Today Paulownia is well established in Central Europe too. This wasn’t always the case in historical times. Initially Paulownia was brought to France in 1834. From there it spread to Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Spain, Austria and also to Switzerland. Today Paulownia is considered to be domestic in all of the mentioned countries.

Municipalities and city administrations value Paulownia as a tree in cityscape and ornamental tree. That is why you can find it in cities, different parks and in gardens.

It is generally assumed that climate change and global warming benefitted Paulownia cultivation in our latitudes as the tree traditionally prefers warmer climate. Regarding to the demands on its habitat Paulownia seems to be very modest. Only a sunny and wind-protected place is required to ensure optimal growing conditions.

Location Spain:

High availability of water | fast growth

Contact Person

Frank Biermann
+49 151 171 403 00