The Lovely Plants

Lovely Flowering Tree for Shady Spots: Yellow Ashoka

Saraca is a genus of small, evergreen trees known for their lovely foliage and flowers. These plants belong to tropical regions of South East Asia where they are grown as ornamental trees. Most species of Saraca are small trees (8 to 10 meters in height) that prefer warm and damp climates in a shady spot.

Saraca Thaipingensis or Yellow Ashoka is a popular ornamental tree grown for its lovely foliage and flowers. The tree is named for its bright yellow and fragrant flowers that gradually turn to orange and then red as they mature. Flowers are rich in nectar and attract butterflies and garden birds. New growth of leaves is glossy green, limpy and soft to touch (often hanging in long pendulous form) that is why, the tree is also called ‘The Handkerchief’ tree.

Yellow Ashoka Flowers, Image by Lip Kee (flickr)

How to Grow Yellow Ashoka

Yellow Ashoka grows up to 10 meters and requires rich and moist (but well drained) soil in a shady spot; preferably under a big tree where they receive bright but indirect sunlight (grow under full sun where summer sun is not harsh and scorching). Yellow Ashoka produces bunches of small yellow flowers that emit pleasant fragrance.

Yellow Ashoka is easy to propagate from seeds. Another popular species of this group is Saraca Indica or Ashoka Tree.