St. Petersburg Mast Trees – Wholesale
When your landscape design in St. Petersburg needs some vertical appeal, wholesale Mast Trees from Palmco are an ideal tropical substitute for Italian Cypress that will help you line avenues and driveways, create privacy screens, reduce noise pollution, slow the wind, and hide unwanted views.
The Mast Tree or False Ashoka
The beautiful Mast Tree, or Polyalthia longifolia ‘Pendula,’ is also called the False Ashoka because it is frequently mistaken for the sacred Indian Asoka or Ashoka tree (Saraca indica), which has similar foliage but is not related. Other names for the Mast Tree include Buddha Tree, Weeping Mast Tree and Indian Fir Tree.
The Mast Tree is native to India and Sri Lanka. It belongs to the Annonaceae family, one of the largest families of flowering tropical plants and trees. Its better-known relatives include the Custard Apple or Wild Sweetsop (Annona reticulata), Soursop (Annona muricata), Ylang-Ylang (Cananga odorata), and Cherimoya (Annona cherimola).
In the days of sailing ships, the straight, flexible trunks of Mast Trees were used to build masts, hence the name. In India and Sri Lanka, they are commonly planted around temples (they appear on the grounds of the Taj Mahal), and the wood is mainly used today for decorative items and drum cylinders.
The Mast Tree will grow to 30 to 45 feet tall and 4 to 5 feet wide at maturity. It has dense layers of feathery, wavy-edged leaves that hang from drooping branches and cover the tree from top to bottom. The contrast of new, coppery brown leaves, older lime green leaves, and mature, glossy dark green leaves makes a spectacular show.
Once a year in spring or summer, star-like flowers blossom and last for two to three weeks. The flowers are pale green and blend inconspicuously with the leaves. Clusters of green fruit follow, ripening to purple or black. These features make the Mast Tree attractive to bees, butterflies and birds.
One of the tree’s best attributes is its ability to form a solid wall of green while using just a small amount of ground space. They are stunning when used to line avenues or driveways, as tall hedges, privacy screens, visual dividers, strong accents around large buildings, and as noise and wind barriers.
Features of the Mast Tree
- Elegant vertical column-like form
- Evergreen ornamental foliage
- Suitable for narrow spaces
- Moderate growth rate
- Tolerates direct sun to partial shade
- Average watering requirements
- Easy to maintain
- Drought tolerant
- Salt tolerant
- No notable pest threats
Growing and Caring for Mast Trees
Mast Trees are best suited to USDA Zones 10a to 11. They are not recommended for use north of coastal Hillsborough County on Florida’s west coast or Indian River County on the east coast.
Plant them in full or partial sun in rich clay, loam or sandy soil, and make sure the soil is well-drained. Mast trees do not like to be wet and will rot if left sitting in water for long periods. Lightly soak the soil and then do not water again until the top two inches have dried out. Avoid overwatering or it may ultimately kill the tree.
When you’re looking for narrow, columnar evergreen trees to take the place of Italian Cypress in your landscape design, contact Palmco for wholesale Mast Trees and other specimens that will grow beautifully in St. Petersburg. Get in touch with us at (239) 283-1329 or (855) GOPALMCO. Wholesale inquiries only. No residential calls, please.