This attractive shrub from southeast Asia is one of
approximately 200 species of Bauhinia.
The genus ranges around the world, mostly in the southern hemisphere. The
unusual leaf resembles a redbud (Cercis)
leaf with a deep notch at the tip. This dwarf orchid tree is among the most
cold-hardy of the genus. It grows six to eight feet tall. It is deciduous in
winter. Large white, star-shaped flowers are held above the foliage from summer
Light: full sun to part shade
Water: moderately drought tolerant when established
Soil: well-drained soil, wide pH tolerance, no special requirements
This shrub grows well in a well-drained soil in full sun or
part shade. The white flowers look especially nice in front of a dark
background. In north Florida,
it may die to the ground in a particularly cold winter and re-emerge in spring.
It is difficult to find in local nurseries.