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Laburnum Anagyroides Sunspire or Laburnum Sunspire, is a new variety of an old garden favourite. Its smaller size and narrow form compared to the regular Laburnum makes it an ideal tree for smaller gardens where the standard variety may not fit!
A deciduous tree, Laburnum is native to the mountains of central Europe, and was introduced to the UK in 1560, where it has remained popular ever since. Laburnum Anagyroides Sunspire, found in northern Italy and Croatia, combines the most desirable characteristics of the original with a more compact form. In late spring and early summer, the green leaves on the upright branches are hidden beneath 30 cm long racemes of fragrant golden-yellow flowers which are at first erect and then droop after a couple of weeks. They are followed by hanging clusters of seed pods that can be removed and disposed of. The oval leaves are a green to grey-green colour and remain attractive throughout the season. All parts of the plant are highly toxic if ingested.
Hardy in all parts of the UK, Laburnum Anagyroides Sunspire will slowly grow to a mature height of 3 metres and spread of 1.5 metres. It will require little or no pruning to maintain its narrow, vase-shaped form, but remove dead or damaged branches in late winter or early spring.
Plant Laburnum Anagyroides Sunspire in a sheltered or exposed location where it will receive morning sun and afternoon shade, in soil rich in humus and moist but well-drained. Once established it is drought-tolerant. It has little salt tolerance so is not suited to coastal regions, but will tolerate pollution so Laburnum Sunspire makes a good choice for small city gardens. Deer are not attracted to it, so it will be safe from grazing in country locations.
Laburnum Anagyroides Sunspire will make a striking specimen planting as the focal point in a small lawn, where its narrow width and smaller height will not overpower the space. A row planted along a walkway would create a brilliant display when the flowers are in bloom. Tucked towards the back of a mixed border, a Laburnum Sunspire would be a bright column of yellow when in bloom, and an attractive backdrop to flowering plants the rest of the season. Laburnum Anagyroides Sunspire is ideal if you are in need of a brightly flowering small tree.