The Wheel Tree

Wheel Tree at the Nursery
Wheel Tree Foliage

Finally another evergreen broadleaf tree that can grow in zone eight!  We have so few, and people seem to need them, to want them.  It’s hard with frozen temperatures and snow and ice to keep big, green leaves green.  Conifers are better at that job.  But we do have the rhododendron, and Pieris japonica, not really trees, but sometimes they grow to tree height (Wikipedia says this is at least 3 meters).  The evergreen magnolia can grow in the Northwest, but regularly gets broken branches during heavy snows.  Maybe deciduous trees are smarter, new clothes every spring!  Here is the Wheel Tree or the Cartwheel Tree or just cut to the chase: Trochodendron araloides. A tree with a circular theme, it is native to the mountains of Japan, Taiwan and Korea.  Uncommon, at our nursery we have only one, and that was hard to find.  I’m looking forward to seeing how it fares in the winter.

Just the Facts
Height 3m, Width 2m
Full sun to part shade
Moist, well-drained soil
Neutral to acid soil
Shelter from cold, drying winds
Slow growing, resents transplanting.

5 thoughts on “The Wheel Tree

  1. I’d be interested to see how it fares the winter. Many people lost laurel trees here last winter -also a glossy leafed evergreen – not because of the cold, but because the ground being frozen for so long meant a severe “drought”. Great post, thanks! 😀

  2. I’m in zone 8 to 8b and have Daphniphyllum macrpodum (redneck rhododendron) in my garden growing very well to add to that ”evergreen broadleaf ” tree list. But now I want , I want ….the wheel tree looks tasty. I also have laurus nobilis, persea borbonia, mag. virginiana and a favorite; cinnamomum camphor (camphor) claiming their evergreen spots in the Avante Gardens’ south side (two distinct style/areas).

  3. There’s one in the Park Terrace Gardens co-op grounds in northern Manhattan. Winter temperatures here go down to single digits (Fahrenheit) and the big shrub thrives.

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