Cassia X nealiae (Rainbow Shower)

  • TropPlant Accession Number (TPAN): 0013
  • Botanical Name: Cassia x nealiae
  • Common Name: Rainbow Shower
  • Cultivar: 'Wilhemina Tenny', 'Lunalilo Yellow', 'Queen's Hospital White'
  • Family: Fabaceae
  • Hybrid Developed In: Hawaii 
Cassia x nealie 'Lunalilo Yellow'
Photo by Matthew Gaston

Landscaping Information

  • Plant Type: Tree
  • Texture: Dense
  • Form: Round-Headed to Spreadin/Weeping/Pendent
  • Height (on average, in landscape use):  30'-35'
  • Height to Spread Ratio: 1:1
  • Growth Rate: Medium
  • Landscape Values: Accent, Street Tree, Color, Mass, Shade, Specimen
  • Outstanding Quality: Flower Color, Seasonal Color
Cassia x nealie 'Wilhemina Tenney'
Photo by Matthew Gaston
Cassia x nealie 'Hospital White'
Photo by Matthew Gaston

Botanical Descriptions

  • Flowers: sepals are ovate to ovate-elliptic, 0.25"-0.5" long, petals are ovate-elliptic and can be cream-white to yellow to salmon and pinkish-peach. Persistent after stamen and calyx fall off (as seen below). Abundant flowers which fall creating a shower. Usually not fragrant. 
Cassia x nealie 'Lunalilo Yellow' flowers
Photo by Matthew Gaston

Cassia x nealie 'Lunalilo Yellow' inflorescence 
Photo by Matthew Gaston

  • Fruits: This hybrid rarely produces fruits.
  • Foliage Color:  Young/immature: Light Green. Mature: Dark Green
  • Leaflet Tip: Acute to Acuminate
  • Foliage Base: Rounded
  • Petiole: 0.25", no petiolar glands
  • Stipules: N/A
  • Margins: Smooth to Undulate
  • Leaf Arrangement: Alternate
  • Leaflet Shape: elliptic
  • Leaf Type: Once Pinnate, Even-Pinnate.
  • Leaf Texture: smooth, glossy, herbaceous
  • Leaf Special Notes: Leaflets are paired
Cassia x nealie 'Lunalilo Yellow' leaves aside an 8" ruler
Photo by Matthew Gaston

  • Bark and Trunk: Brownish gray, smooth to mildly course.
Cassia x nealie 'Wilhelmina Tenney' 
Photo by Matthew Gaston
Cassia x nealie 'Lunalilo Yellow'
Photo by Matthew Gaston

Horticultural Information

  • Light Preference: Full Sun
  • Light Tolerances: Semi-Sun
  • Soil Preferences: Organic, Well-Drained.
  • Tolerances: Drought 
  • Water Requirements: Dry to Medium moisture
  • Notes on Maintenance: enjoys dry leeward locations, needs good drainage and average fertility. Trees thrive with a thorough watering and then letting the soil go dry before watering again. Not many pets, one pest is the Chinese Rose Beetle, which merely eats foliage by night. Non-aggressive roots, abundant flowers, good canopy, and no fruit makes it a spectacular street tree.
  • Propagation: Air Layer, Grafting
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 9b-11b
  • Weed Risk Assessment Score (WRA): -8, Low Risk

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