Hong Kong Orchid Tree
Photo - Linda Ross
Hong Kong Orchid tree (Bauhinia x blakeana)
Viewed from a distance the tree is a mass of colour throughout winter. Up close, the large flowers resemble orchids or butterflies. They range in colour from yellow through pink to deep purple. The bi-lobed leaves are dark green and shiny. Bauhinias will get to 5-7m tall and like fertile, well-drained soils. They do best in full sun with protection from frost and cold winds. (Having said that, the best avenue of bauhinias we’ve seen is growing along Bells Line of Road, west of Sydney at often-chilly Kurrajong!) Pruning is not usually required, but can be done after flowering if necessary. This easily-grown tree is the floral emblem of Hong Kong.