Black locust resembles white wisteria up a tree.

If only it were not such an invasive weed, black locust, Robinia pseudoacacia, might be appreciate for remarkably fragrant and abundant white bloom that resembles that of wisteria. The pinnately compound leaves are about five to ten inches long with rounded leaflets that individually are about one half to three quarters of an inch wide and twice as long. Autumn color is soft yellow. Trees can grow fast to more than fifty feet tall. Furrowed and fissured gray bark makes middle aged trees seem older and more distinguished than they really are. The wood is excellent firewood. All parts are toxic so should be kept out of reach of horses.

Black locust is native to a big area between Pennsylvania, Georgia and Kansas. It was brought to California both to produce firewood quickly, and because it is so appealing in gardens. Modern cultivars and other specie with purplish pink or pinkish purple flowers lack fragrance, but  are not invasive.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s