Common Name: Eastern Redbud, Judas Tree

Scientific Name:  Cercis canadensis (Probably from Latin cerasus, cherry for the color)


Eastern Redbud is a small, deciduous, short-lived tree or shrub that grows to a height of about 10 meters in the transition zone between the large trees of the forest and a glade, lea, prairie, or other grassy opening.


Potpourri:  The redbud gets its name from the appearance of buds along the entire length of the previous year's growth of branches, twigs and trunk.  It is the state tree of Oklahoma


The name Judas Tree derives from the legend that Judas Iscariot, the betrayer of Jesus, hanged himself on the related species Cercis siliquastrum of western Asia.  This appears in only one of the gospels. Matthew xxvii verse 5 states "So Judas threw the money (30 silver coins) into the temple and left. Then he went away and hanged himself."  The original white flowers then turned red with blood. 


The bark of the Redbud has been used as a mild but active astringent for diarrhea and dysentery and as a treatment for the lungs when congested with pulmonary disorders.

Website Home Page