parrotia persica

Persian Parrotia

A tough grower with uniquely beautiful leaf and bark patterns, the Persian Parrotia is perfect for many uses.


  • Tolerates: Air Pollution, Clay Soil
  • Sun: Full Sun
  • Zones: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
  • Maintenance: Medium
  • Spread (Min): 20
  • Spread (Max): 30
  • Height (Min): 20
  • Height (Max): 40


The Persian Parrotia is cultivated for its beauty and durability. In fall, the Parrotia’s foliage puts on a beautiful display of fall colors: oranges, reds, and yellows. As the tree begins to mature, its bark begins to exfoliate revealing splotches of dark green, white, and gray. In addition to its year-round appeal, it is highly tolerant of stressful conditions such as heat, drought, and poor soils. You can’t really beat that!

  • Year-round eye appeal
  • Exfoliating bark
  • Beautiful fall colors
  • Easy to grow and care for
  • Slow to moderate growth rate


The Persian Parrotia’s oblong leaves are 2 to 5 inches long, closely resembling the leaf od witch-hazel. The leaves are dark green in the summer and then change to a fall mix of yellow, red, and orange.

The young trees bark starts smooth and gray. As the tree matures, its bark begins to exfoliate, creating patches of dark green, white, and gray.

Appearance: This tree is a deciduous, oval or rounded, multi-stemmed shrub whose oblong leaves turn various shades of red, orange, and yellow in the fall. Its mature bark exfoliates to patches of dark greens, whites, and tans.

Planting Location: The Persian Parrotia prefers full sun and slightly acidic, medium moisture, well-drained soils but tolerates light shade and a wide range of soil conditions.

Hardiness: The Parrotia has an exceptional tolerance to heat and drought once it becomes established. In this way, it is well-sited for low water use locations such as highway medians, parking lots, and above-ground planters.

Uses on Property: Street or flowering tree, locations with infrequent watering.

Pruning: Prune after flowering in the spring.

  • Plant Hardiness Zones: 4 – 8
  • Mature Width: 20 – 30
  • Mature Height: 20 – 40
  • Soil Conditions: Best grown in slightly acidic, medium moisture, well-drained soils
  • Sunlight: Full Sun
  • Drought Tolerance: Once established, the Persain Ironwood has an exceptional tolerance for heat and drought.

The Persian Parrotia tree is native to the lower mountain slopes of the Alborz mountains in northern Iran. It is not widely grown in Europe and in the United States.

The genus name of the Persian Parrotia honors F. W. Parrot, a German traveler and naturalist (an expert in or student of natural history) who climbed Mount Arart in 1834.