There are literally millions of hectares of Paulownia trees in China alone (and who would question China’s unprecedented success in commercial activities over recent years? However, it is little known in the west yet despite its numerous qualities:
- Fast growing hardwood is light (224-288 kg per cubic meter). Does not warp, crack or twist.
- Hardwood is fire-resistant. University of Texas labelled wood fire-resistant up to a flashpoint of 477oC.
- Fast-growing hardwood that is used for furniture, musical instruments, doors, mouldings, window frames, poles, pulp and paper.
- Makes great veneer and plywood.
- Paulownia can be commercially harvested from one year from planting for biomass, (5 to 10 years for valuable timber).
- Peels 20% faster than conventional hardwood.
- Lightweight with excellent weight-strength ratio.
- Excellent external and internal cladding for energy efficient homes.
- Regenerate indefinitely from the stump after harvesting indefinitely.
- Ornamental trees grow from 7.5-9 meters in three years, forestry trees grow 21-24 meters in 10-15 yrs.
- Air dries in 30-60 days (to 12% moisture, avg. 20% when cut, for most other timber 20% is expected moisture content after drying).
- Each hectare of trees will take 5 tonnes of harmful CO2 gases and dust from the air each year.
- Each tree can absorb 110 litres of waste water per year.
- Each tree releases about 6 kg of oxygen per year, more than any other species.
- Each tree removes 22 kg of carbon dioxide per year.
- Exceptional (up to 40% increase) crop yields of traditional farm crops can be grown between the trees (Inter-cropping).
- Leaves make nice tea and their beautiful flowers add tasty exotic flavours to salads.
- Leaves contain 18 – 20% protein and are high in nitrogen.
- A nature tree will produce 85 lbs of dried fertiliser or animal feed.
- Can successfully reclaim contaminated land and bring back to good condition.
Waste Water Control
- Increased nitrogen uptake or intake per acre.
- Erosion control.
- Waterway contamination can be significantly reduced.
- Can reduce the spread of odours.
- Excellent windbreak and screen.
- Increased return per acre.
Waste from feed lots such as hog, turkey and chicken farms is the best fertilizer for the trees and, in turn, the leaves are an excellent food for the animals.
The creation of hybrid species allows for growing in varying climatic conditions. The species can be used for reclaiming contaminated industrial sites, re-forestation of burnt down woods and to there deep root system makes them ideal for stabilising ground to prevent landslides.
Paulownia is a hardwood but is very light in weight, similar to balsa but much stronger. It is often referred to as the Princess Tree because it was named after Princess Pavlovna of Russia, later Queen Paulownia of the Netherlands.