The burst of golden-yellow, dripping flowers that appear in spring on a laburnum tree are truly magnificent. Laburnums can be grown as small, free-standing trees or trained to grow over a pergola, archway, or walkway to show off their clusters of flowers that look like peas.
Laburnums have traditionally been planted in larger gardens, but there are more recent varieties that are suitable for use in containers and smaller gardens. Because they are deciduous, laburnums shed their leaves in the fall and then reappear in the spring. They grow quickly, growing about 40 centimeters per year.
How to grow laburnums
Laburnums thrive in moist, well-drained soil when placed in a sunny location. They are low-maintenance trees that require no watering or feeding and only require trimming when they are out of shape.
Where to grow laburnums
Laburnum thrives in scrubland and hillsides in its natural environment. In the garden, it needs full sun and well-drained soil. Although it can survive in some shade, it will not produce as many flowers. The plant may die from waterlogged soil.
How to plant laburnums
Like most trees, Laburnum should be planted in the autumn or winter. Create a hole larger than the rootball and around the same depth. The planting hole should have a lot of garden compost in it. Fill in with garden soil, compact, and water. You could then securely stake and mulch additional garden compost.
How to care for laburnums
Other than regular care for size, shape, and health, free standing laburnums don’t need much pruning other than removing dead, diseased, or crossing branches and trimming to an attractive shape. However, you will need to trim and tie the stems in if you are training your laburnum over an arch or pergola. Remove any shoots that grow just below the graft if you bought a grafted tree. If you prune the tree in the spring or early summer, it will likely bleed sap. Prune between the end of summer and Christmas.
Laburnums don’t usually have a lot of problems, but they can get honey fungus. They might also have powdery mildew and blackfly.
The laburnum leaf mining moth’s caterpillars can leave ugly, circular marks on the leaves. It rarely harms the tree and doesn’t need to be treated. You might find that natural predators like blue tits keep it under control.
Laburnums can occasionally put on a show with a lot of flowers one year and less flowers the next. This is completely normal and not cause for concern.