Monday, 5 August 2019

Catalpa and some pretty relatives.

Manchester Council plants a strange mixture of street trees with quite a variety of species. I would prefer that they planted native trees to provide more support to native ecosystems. However, if they are going to chose an exotic-looking, decorative street tree then why not a Catalpa bignonioides? The RHS consider the flowers to be a good source of nectar and pollen for bees and other pollinators. Though that is only for a couple of weeks as the flowers do not last long.

The panicles of flowers are a little reminiscent of horse chestnut flowers. In Catalpa each flower is much larger and the whole panicle is not as neatly-shaped.

This example is on Albany Road in Chorlton. I took all these photos today in a light rain under a lead-grey sky. I had not noticed they were in flower soon enough to plan to take my camera out during the recent heatwave. At least I did not have to cope with the glare of the bright white flowers overwhelming the camera's optics.

Catalpa bignonioides flowers.