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A multi-stemmed, deciduous tree with a rounded columnar form, stewartia features stunning bark that exfoliates in strips of gray, orange, and reddish brown once the trunk attains a diameter of 2 to 3 inches. Serrated foliage emerges bronzy purple in spring, develops into a dark green by summer, and turns red or orange in the fall. In midsummer, "glamorous" white camellia-like flowers open in random succession and are followed by pointed brown seed pods, which are persistent but not very ornamental.
This tree grows somewhat slowly until established, eventually reaching up to 40 feet tall and 20 feet wide. It's an excellent specimen tree.
Grow in moist, acidic, well-drained soil in full morning sun or partial shade. Avoid a site with hot afternoon sun. Does not do well in areas where temperatures remain high during the night.