Another unusual tree that found a home on Saratoga Place in west Davis, but is frequently found in tropical climates is the Tipa tree. About to landscape their new home, Robin Whitmore’s twin brothers from Southern California suggested this species. After doing some research, she and Carl Winter planted their tree next to a greenbelt 25 years ago. They love its filtered shade and bright orange-yellow blossoms in early summer. It has grown rapidly to 90-ft tall and 70-ft wide (10.4 ft girth).
Although this species is native to Brazil, it seems well-adapted to our clay soils and hot dry summers.
The Tipa is semi-deciduous in our climate—it will lose leaves slowly over the winter, more so if we get really low temperatures. The shallow roots can heave sidewalks, so it should be planted in parks and other large open spaces. Because of its fast growth, young Tipa trees require frequent formative pruning.