Stewartia Monadelpha (Tall Stewartia)

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technicalTechnical Description


Type: Deciduous tree
Hardiness Zone: (5) 6-9
Sunlight: Partial shade
Soil Moisture: Well drained
Soil pH: Acid to neutral
Flowering: June
Flowers: White
Leaves: Deep red fall color
Height: 20 to 25 feet







Shrubs with several branches from the base or trees to 25 m.; periderm on young shoots exfoliating in thin strips or flakes, the young branches pubescent, becoming smooth and reddish brown; bark smooth and mottled with alternating reddish-brown and lighter buff-colored areas, exfoliating in thin sheets; winter buds compressed, ca. 7 mm. long with 3-5 (-7) finely pubescent, imbricated scales. Petioles 4-15 mm. long shallowly grooved on adaxial surface; leaf blades ovate, elliptical to lanceolate, 4.2-10 cm. long, 1.6-3.4 cm. wide, with finely crenate-serrulate margins ciliate when young and with incurved teeth, acuminate apices, broadly to narrowly cuneate to attenuate bases; upper and lower surfaces of the blades finely appressed-pubescent, primarily along the veins, often with axillary tufts of hairs in the axils of the midvein and lateral veins beneath. Flowers axillary, very rarely 2 together, the pedicels (5-) 7-10 (-16) mm. long; the persistent bracts subtending the calyx foliaceous, subopposite, oblong to oblong-ovate, 9-17 mm. long, 4-7 mm. wide, with acuminate to obtuse apices and finely serrulate margins. Sepals 5, connate at the base, the free lobes subequal, ovate to suborbicular, 5-7 mm. long, 3-4 mm. wide, with acute to acuminate apices; calyx persistent, appressed to the lower portion of the maturing capsule, in fruit the lobes erect or slightly reflexed. Petal 5, connate at base, obovate to suborbicular with slightly erose margins and cuneate bases, 11-15 mm. long, 8-12 mm. wide, the abaxial surface sericeous; stamens numerous, the filaments connate the base into a tube ca. 4 mm. high, the tube adnate to the base of the corolla; free portions of the filaments finely pubescent, up to 10 mm. long. Ovary conical, 5-angled, 3-5 mm. long at anthesis, densely pilose and tapering into the basally pilose style; style glabrous above, 3-4 mm. long, terminating in 5 stigmatic arms, the arms 1-2 mm. long. Capsules 11-14 mm. long, 7-11 mm. broad, ovoid, reddish brown, finely pubescent, particularly at the rostrate apices, 5- or occasionally 6-ribbed, dehiscing apically into 5 or 6 locules, the valve walls 4-5 mm. wide. Seeds 2 per locule, 5-6 mm. long, 3-4 mm. wide, planoconvex, irregularly obovate in outline, reddish brown, the base often shallowly notched, the raised central portion surrounded by a very narrow wing; surface finely puncticulate. 2n=30.




Monadelpha GlobalDistribution

Known from a few collections from mountainous regions of south-central Honshu, Kyushu, and Shikoku Islands, Japan; cultivated in western gardens











Descriptions from Stephen A. Spongberg, 1974, A Review of Deciduous-Leaved Species of Stewartia (Theaceae), Journal of the Arnold Arboretum 55: 182-214.