Candlestick Cassia: pollinator and nitrogen fixer

Pollinators

Candlestick cassia is a popular permaculture plant in our zone 9 food forest. They are great, fast-growing, nitrogen-fixing chop-and-drop plants that are buzzing with pollinators when in bloom.

We sell our seeds on eBay here if you would like to start your own.

Also Known As Candle Bush, Senna Alata, Cassia Alata Fabaceae, Candletree, Candlestick Tree, Ringworm Tree, Empress Candle Bush, Empress Candle Plant, Christmas Candles, Candelabra Bush

this fast growing, one year old cassia will get twice as big this year

After the cassia flowers, it will start producing the seed pods, lots of them. If you leave them on the tree, they will dry out and crack open, dropping cassias seeds everywhere spread all over the property.

We end up with so many trees to chop and drop. They provide a tremendous amount of biomass in which we use to mulch the ground to suppress the weeds and keep the moisture in.

Although they are awesome, the trees can quickly take over the yard if the pods aren’t removed prior to setting seed, so be responsible, and cut the trees back before they take over.

Medicinal

Fast-growing: Biomass!
Easy to care for
Pollinators
Easy to propagate: Produce a lot of seed
Nitrogen Fixing

We sell our Candlestick Cassia Seeds! Buy them now on eBay

Candlestick Cassia Zone 9 Growing Requirements
Zone Hardiness
Candlestick cassias are considered subtropical, growing best in zones 8-12. Our Candlestick Cassia, zone 9, will die back during a hard frost, but when mulched well, they tend to grow back in the spring.

Height and Spacing
My trees grow up to 7 feet tall, but I cut them back after they bloom. I have read they can reach up to 30 feet tall.

Sun Exposure
Full Sun, Part Sun

Soil and Water Requirements
Drought tolerant

Bloom Characteristics and Foliage
A Candlestick Cassia’s foliage consists of 10-15 pairs of large, oval-shaped leaves. My candlestick cassia’s, zone 9, usually bloom in November with 12-18″ yellow flowers that resemble candlesticks.

Candlestick Cassia: Care and Maintenance
Pruning
Prune in the spring to promote growth.

Mulching
Mulch heavy in winter

Benefits of Growing Candlestick Cassia
My yard benefits greatly from the tremendous amount of nitrogen-rich mulch it provides through all the leaves and branches this tree produces.
Although I have never tried it, there are many health benefits attributed to the Candlestick Cassia tree due to its anti-fungal properties. Including eczema, skin diseases, sickle cell, burns and coughs/colds.
Attracts Pollinators: bees, butterflies
Biomass: awesome, nitrogen-rich leaves

How to Propagate Candlestick Cassia
Growing Candlestick Cassia from Seed:
One candlestick cassia tree will produce well over 50 pods that house more than 30 seeds a piece…meaning you can turn one tree into millions very quickly.

After your candlestick cassia blooms, each flower bloom will form into a bunch of green seeds pods. Leave them on the tree until the pods dry out and turn black.

Candlestick Cassia in Bloom

Once black, cut the pods off the branch, crack them open and collect the awesome looking seeds.

If left on the tree too long, the seed pods will dry so much that they crack and the seeds fall to the ground. Be careful as these plants will overrun your yard, which I’m ok with because I love the biomass. I have found new candlestick cassia trees sprouting over 100 feet away from my original plant.

Candlestick Cassia Pollinators
Candlestick cassias attract all kinds of pollinators. I have seen many bees, butterflies, and ladybugs on our trees. The plant is a host to sulphur butterfly caterpillars that feed on the leaves.

Candle stick Cassia Bees and Pollinators
Sleepy Orange, Cloudless Sulphur, and Orange-barred Sulphur butterflies

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