The Korean Stewartia Tree is touted by famous horticulturalist Micheal Dirr as the best ornamental landscaping tree there is and we agree. An excellent, small to medium-sized, deciduous garden tree, 30 to 40 feet tall and 25 to 30 feet wide, Korean Stewartia is an all-season performer, exhibiting a distinctive branching pattern in winter, camellia-like flowers in summer, and bright yellow and red foliage in autumn.
Most other trees have finished flowering by the time these flowers emerge. Once you have seen it the fall color is unforgettable. Stewartia bark is spectacular, peeling off and exposing contrasting colors. It could be grown for this characteristic alone.
The tree branches close to the ground forming a sinewy pattern not unlike crepe myrtle. The Korean Stewartia would make a nice patio tree, could accent an entry way, or could be grown as a canopy tree over a sidewalk. A row of them on either side of a sidewalk spaced 15 feet apart makes an outstanding 'covered walkway.' Stewartia is moderate growing, features gorgeous bark, beautiful blooms and fantastic fall leaf colors. It offers beauty and interest in every season. Stewartia trees are hard to find and relatively unknown but this is certain to change as people learn what a truly spectacular tree it is. The Stewartia prefers to be planted in rich, organic soil with good drainage and full sun.