Empress Tree, winter

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Empress Tree, pointing to first blossoms of spring

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Empress Tree, leaf drop

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This Empress Tree is located in the National Arboretum in Washington DC. It was planted in 1969, a time when this native Chinese species was desired for its beauty and quality of wood. Today the Empress Tree is an invasive species that poses a moderate to severe threat to native plant communities across the Eastern United States. It stands next to a grove of experimental cherry trees whose blossoms attract many visitors in early spring.

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