Common Name: Eastern Redbud
Scientific Name: Cercis canadensis
In 1781 Thomas Jefferson listed redbud in his Notes on the State of Virginia, as a native "Esculent" tree. He intended it to be a part of his shrubbery scheme for the western slope of Monticello and in the clumps of trees planted in the angles of the house in 1807. He likewise directed that redbuds be planted among clumps of native trees and shrubs at Poplar Forest in 1812. One of the earliest American reference sto this tree belongs to John Custis in correspondence with Peter Collinson in 1735.
It is often called "Judas-tree," which actually refers to a Mediterranean species, Cercis siliquastrum, a species Judas supposedly used to hang himself.
The Eastern Redbud is a hardy, deciduous, spring flowering tree with graceful heart-shaped leaves and purplish-pink, pea-like flowers.
Primary Source References
1771 September 30. "Trees...Red-bud."
1818 April 11. (Jefferson to Jacob Bigelow). "The red bud blooms Apr. 2-19."
- ↑ This article is based on a Center for Historic Plants Information Sheet.
- ↑ Notes ed. Peden, 40.
- ↑ Betts, Garden Book, 334.
- ↑ Ibid, 494.
- ↑ Ann Leighton, American Gardens in the Eighteenth Century (Amherst: The University of Massachusetts Press, 1986), 405.
- ↑ Joan Parry Dutton, Plants of Colonial Williamsburg (Williamsburg: Colonial Williamsburg, 1979), 48.
- ↑ Please note that this list should not be considered comprehensive.
- ↑ Betts, Garden Book, 23. Manuscript and transcription at the Massachusetts Historical Society.
- ↑ PTJ, 20:380.
- ↑ Betts, Garden Book, 579.
- Adams, Denise Wiles. Restoring American Gardens: An Encyclopedia of Heirloom Ornamental Plants, 1640-1940. Portland, Oregon: Timber Press, Inc., 2004
- Thomas Jefferson Center for Historic Plants