Quick facts and care essentials
• Climate zones 3-6, 15-17, 31-41
• Full sun or light shade
• Regular to moderate water
• Growth rate: slow
A single- or multitrunked small tree 20 to 40 feet high and from 15 to over 30 feet wide, Persian parrotia is attractive all year. Its ¾-inch, oval leaves unfurl reddish purple and mature to lustrous dark green; in autumn, they first turn golden yellow, then orange or rosy pink, and finally scarlet. Small flowers with conspicuous reddish stamens open in late winter, before new leaves emerge. In mature trees, the smooth gray bark flakes off to reveal lighter patches beneath.
Persian parrotia prefers slightly acid soil but tolerates alkaline soil; it will grow in sun as well as light shade. It's resistant to pests.