What does an Indian bean tree look like?

Asked By: Dongmei Fahlenbock | Last Updated: 2nd February, 2020
Category: events and attractions historic site and landmark tours
4.1/5 (32 Views . 33 Votes)
It originates from the Eastern United states and was introduced in 1726. It has large heart shaped velvety leaves, very large when the tree is young. The beans are the tree's bean-like pods, which are very slim and almost perfectly cylindrical and can grow up to 16 inches in length.

Click to see full answer


In respect to this, can you eat the beans on a catalpa tree?

The tree is famous for its long seed pods, which resemble beans or cigars. Despite the common name of "bean tree," however, this catalpa has no known edible uses. PFAF calls its roots highly poisonous, but various medicinal teas have been made from its bark, seeds and pods, each addressing different ailments.

One may also ask, what kind of tree grows beans? The name catalpa is said to come from a Cherokee Indian word that means bean tree. The seed pods look like large string beans. Speciosa is from the Latin meaning species. Catalpa is sometimes called cigar tree, also referring to the long seed pods that are visible from mid-summer and into fall.

Also asked, how do you care for Indian bean trees?

Site. Indian bean trees need full sun or partial shade and deep, well-drained soil. They prefer moist soils but adapt to most soil types. In mild climates, the trees do well in seaside areas, but need protection from strong coastal winds.

What do catalpa tree seeds look like?

The Catalpa has the distinction of bearing some of the showiest flowers of all the American native trees. The fruit is a long, thin bean like pod 20-40 cm long and 8-10 mm diameter; it often stays attached to tree during winter. The pod contains numerous flat light brown seeds with two papery wings.

34 Related Question Answers Found

Can you smoke catalpa beans?

It is said that the Indians smoked the bean pods for a hallucinogenic effect, so the tree became known as the "Indian Cigar Tree", the Indian bean, and smoking bean. The Southern catalpa is smaller than the Northern catalpa and reaches about 30 to 40 feet tall.

Do all catalpa trees have worms?

The answer is no. Catalpa worms are the larva of the catalpa sphinx moth. They feed on nothing in the world but catalpa foliage. The moths are attracted to the trees, pollinate the flowers, and lay their eggs on the underside of the foliage.

What do catalpa worms turn into?

Also sometimes spelled "catawba," the catalpa tree is the sole source of food for the sphinx moth larva, which turns into a distinctive caterpillar with yellow and black markings.

Are catalpa beans poisonous to dogs?

For the most part, catalpa trees are not poisonous. The poisonous parts of the tree are the roots and possibly the leaves as well. Both of these are poisonous to humans and animals alike. The flowers and beans are said to not be poisonous, though.

Is a catalpa tree fast growing?


The catalpa is a hardy deciduous tree that readily grows in USDA hardiness zones 4 to 8. It has moderate to fast growth, tending to grow rapidly when juvenile, but slowing with maturity. The height at 20 years is about 20 feet.

Can goats eat catalpa leaves?

I have seen references to the Catalpa tree being poisonous, however, I have also seen reports of goats eating leaves with gusto and some references only say the roots are poisonous. Many sources say it is a safe tree to have in pastures for horses and cattle.

Can you grow a catalpa tree from seed?

Well-drained, moist soil is essential for sowing catalpa tree seeds. Sow catalpa seeds in well-drained potting soil in 3-inch pots, or in well-drained soil in a cold frame in a partial-shade site. All pots for catalpa seedlings must have drainage holes. Water the seeds when the soil surface is dry.

Can you prune an Indian bean tree?

Although the tree responds well to hard pruning, and coppicing or pollarding can increase the leaf size, bear in mind that this will be at the expense of flowers. When should I prune? Prune and coppice in winter when the plant is dormant. In early spring remove any frost damaged growth.

Are catalpa trees invasive?


It is an invasive, weedy tree which escapes cultivation easily. The flowers, long seedpods and seeds fall down from spring through winter, and create a mess on the ground anywhere near the tree. Its brittle wood makes its branches subject to wind and ice damage. Catalpas can readily be grown from seed.

How much is a catalpa tree?

Price List for American Catalpa Tree
Size Ships Price
1-2' 11/15/2019 - 04/01/2020 $7.95
3-4' 11/15/2019 - 04/01/2020 $14.95
4-5' 11/15/2019 - 04/01/2020 $22.95
5-6' 11/15/2019 - 04/01/2020 $34.95

How do you grow a catalpa tree?

How to Grow a Catalpa Tree From Seed
  1. Collect the pods and store them in a cool, dry area.
  2. Plant the seeds in a pot with good drainage.
  3. Lightly water the seeds, and place the pot in a shaded area.
  4. Transplant the seedlings to progressively larger pots.
  5. Transplant the tree into your garden or lawn.

How do you prune a catalpa tree?

It's best to prune your Catalpa when it is dormant between the autumn and late winter. They respond well to hard pruning so don't be afraid take out larger branches if needed. Remember to always make a cut just above a bud and at an angle facing away from the bud.

What is a honey locust tree look like?

Honey Locust
The flowers are greenish-yellow rather than white or pink and are fairly insignificant compared to the showy flowers of other locusts. Honey locust produces the largest, heaviest pods, about 10 to 18 inches long and 1 inch wide. Often, the dark brown pods are twisted.

Which trees have seed pods?


The bean-like pods are characteristic of many members of the family, including mimosa (Albizia spp.), laburnum (Laburnum spp.), maakia (Maakia spp.), acacia (Acacia spp.) and honeylocust (Gleditsia spp.). Other trees, like the catalpa (Catalpa spp.) have similar, elongated seed pods, but their leaves are large.

What is a cigar tree called?

Catalpa bignonioides. Description: This tree, also known ascigar tree” for it's cigar-shaped, cylindrical seed pods, is located up Prospect Street behind the Marsh Botanical Garden. It is most commonly called the Southern catalpa, since it it is native to a small group of southern states.

What is the difference between northern and southern catalpa trees?

You can't reliably tell the difference between northern and southern catalpa by leaf shape; although, northern is supposed to have slightly more long-pointed leaves. However, southern catalpa leaves usually emerge three at a time around the same spot (whorled). Northern catalpa leaves are 6-12 inches long.