The UK’s most popular Laburnum is by far the common Laburnum (laburnum androgyroides), as well as the hybrid Laburnum Watereri ‘Vossii. The Golden Chain tree is another common name. Although there are many varieties, these are the most popular.
Things you should know before growing Laburnum Trees:
- It is a deciduous tree that has green leaves from March through November. It sheds its leaves in the late autumn.
- After 15 years, it reaches its full size. It can reach a maximum height up to 7m/22ft, and spread out over 6m/19ft.
- The stunning display of flowers it produces lasts from two to three weeks.
- To humans and animals, all parts of the tree can be poisonous. Children eating the seeds are most at risk. They are in small, flat pods that look somewhat like pea pods. These pods can sometimes be mistaken for peas by children and eaten.
- Nearby ponds, laburnum trees can almost certainly poison fish.
- They can grow in most soils, but they will not thrive in wet ground.
- They can grow in partial or full shade, but they will produce their best flowers when it is fully sunny.
- Extremely durable and can withstand temperatures as low as -20°C.
- Once established, the tree doesn’t require much attention. Avoid feeding the tree, particularly if you are not using a general fertilizer. Only water in severe drought conditions.
- Your laburnum may produce huge displays of flowers one year but not the next. This is normal.
Planting a Laburnum Tree
Laburnum trees are no different than other small trees. Before you plant it, make sure it has enough room to grow to its maximum height of 7m/22ft. It should also have a spread of 6m/19ft. Full sun is best for the best flowers. These trees can grow in any type of soil, but they do not thrive in waterlogged areas. Planting a Laburnum in September or March is the best time.
To avoid any damage, it is a good rule of thumb to plant your tree at twice the height it will be when it matures. Make a hole twice as wide as the roots, and place the tree in it. Water well and firm up the soil around roots. Use a trowel to gently work the soil with a trowel.
Although your Laburnum tree will not need to be pruned throughout its lifetime, it may require it during the strong growing season. This will reduce the chance of fungal infections causing pruning wounds.
How Poisonous is Laburnum Tree?
Even though eating the entire laburnum tree can have very unpleasant side effects, the risk of death is minimal. The hybrid Laburnum Watereri ‘Vossii’ produces a smaller number of fruits than the regular Laburnum. This is to reduce the risk.
Growing Laburnum Tree from Seed
When the laburnum seedpods have not opened yet, but are still brown, is the best time to harvest them. The best time to harvest laburnum seeds is usually mid-September, although this can vary depending on the weather.
If you want the seeds to grow, they must be broken through by removing their hard coating. You can do this by filling a small cup or jar with warm but not boiling water. If the water burns your lips, it is too hot. 75degC is a good temperature. Mix the seeds with the warm water. Let them soak for 24 hours. Examine the seeds after they have been soaked. Many seeds should have doubled in size, or at least three times their original size. These are the seeds to choose. You can either throw them out or soak them in hotter water again.
How To Grow Laburnum Tree In a Pot?
Put 8cm/3in of good quality multi-purpose compost in a pot and allow it to soak for half an hour in a shallow tray with water. It is now ready to be taken out of the water. Four 2cm holes should be made in the compost using a pencil. Each hole should contain one seed. Cover each hole with compost
The pot should be placed in a cool place (dark or bright) that is between 15 and 20 degrees Celsius / 60 to 68 degrees Fahrenheit. The temperature should not rise above this level. A cool windowsill that is not in direct sunlight will be most suitable. Avoid placing pots over a radiator.
How Long Does Seed Germination Take For Laburnum Trees?
It takes about three to four weeks for the seed to germinate and to appear above the compost surface. Once the seedlings have emerged, you can move the pot to a sunny windowsill in a cool, bright, and airy place. The pot should be kept slightly damp, but you must water it when the top 3 cm is dry. Move the pots outside in late spring, but do not expose them to frost. As above, water the pots as usual. Transfer the seedling to a larger pot that is approximately 12cm in width when it reaches twice its height. When the pot is root bound, you can put it back in.
After planting the seeds, the tree can be placed in its final place within two and a half year. This should be done in May so the tree has at least six months of growth time outdoors in good weather. The young tree should be dried for a few weeks before being planted. Make sure to water the tree well during dry periods, but don’t waterlog it.