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Chinese Fringe Tree

Scientific Name:
Chionanthus retusus

Under Power Lines:
Yes—this tree is approved for planting under power lines.

Street Tree Planting:
Yes—minimum planting strip width of 5 feet. If planting a street tree, you must be approved for a permit.

Known for its beautiful white spring blooms, the tree's handsome bark also provides winter interest. Quite uncommon in Seattle, it will make a lovely street tree under power lines. Note- we are purchasing a single stemmed tree.

Photo credit: 石川 Shihchuan

Mature Height:
25 feet

Mature Spread:
25 feet

Dark green leaves turn yellow in fall

White fragrant blooms in spring. Flowers have fringe-linke petals

Olive-like bluish fruits in late summer provide a great food source for birds and wildlife.

Cultural Notes:
Very easy to grow. Prefers well-drained soil in full sun to part shade, flowering best in full sun. Drought tolerant once established.

Potential Problems:
No serious insect or disease problems.

Plant Image Library

Minimum Planting Distances:

  • 15 feet from house or building
  • 3 ½ feet back from the face of the curb
  • 5 feet from underground utility lines
  • 10 feet from power poles
  • 7 ½ feet from driveways (10 feet recommended)
  • 20 feet from street lights and other existing trees
  • 30 feet from street intersections

More Information:


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