Silk tree – proper care and soft pruning for this silk-flowered tree

Silk tree flower with pink rim and white center

The silk tree is famous for its very beautiful summer blooming.

Care and pruning are among the actions that will enhance the blooming and spur your silk tree’s growth.

Silk tree Facts Summary

NameAlbizia julibrissin
FamilyLegume family
Type – Tree

Height – 20 to 40 ft (6 to 12 m)
Exposure – Full sun
Soil type – ordinary

Foliage – deciduous
Blooming – June to September

Note of caution for garden lovers in the USA: silk tree is invasive there…

Planting the silk tree

Either in fall or spring, preferably in a spot sheltered from wind.

  • Where winters are cold, favor a sunny spot that is sheltered from wind, because it originally is best suited to mild temperate climate.

If you’d like a particularly hardy silk tree variety, try the “Summer chocolate” silk tree. It’s hardy down to 20°C. The purple-brown foliage will be a true eye-catcher in the garden!

  • More generally, it is said that the silk tree resists temperatures below freezing down to about 23°F (-5°C).

Pruning and maintenance for the silk tree

The silk tree is a very easy tree to grow because it requires practically no care.

  • Letting its branches spread freely is what will give it the most beautiful stature. It naturally grows to form an umbrella-like shape that it is best not to try to control.
  • Remove suckers often. These are the shoots that emerge at the base of the tree.

If you wish to reduce the size or balance branch growth:

  • Wait for the end of the blooming.
  • Try to keep its umbrella-like shape.

Learn more about the silk tree

Soft thin stamens of the silk tree flowerPink-red flowers with elongated stamens really seem to burst out and are very elegant. Both the leaves and the flowers contribute to establishing a feeling of airy lightness.

This is the reason this tree is called the “silk tree”.

Another name for it is acacia tree (in Europe, mostly), or sometimes also the Persian mimosa tree. Its beauty should lead you to plant it as a standalone to best take advantage of its many appealing characteristics.

Smart tip about the silk tree

Plant your silk tree in full sun because it loves heat and its flowers will be even nicer!


Credits for images shared to Nature & Garden (all edits by Gaspard Lorthiois):
Flowering silk tree by Anrita Krause ★ under Pixabay license
Silk tree bloom stamens by Heouk Shin ★ under Pixabay license