Caragana Species, Black Karagana, Siberian Pea Tree, Yellow Acacia

Caragana arborescens

Family: Fabaceae (fab-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Caragana (kar-uh-GAN-uh) (Info)
Species: arborescens (ar-bo-RES-senz) (Info)
Synonym:Caragana inermis
Synonym:Caragana sibirica
Synonym:Robinia caragana




Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


10-12 ft. (3-3.6 m)

12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)


6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)


USDA Zone 2b: to -42.7 C (-45 F)

USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)

USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)

USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


Plant has spines or sharp edges; use extreme caution when handling

Bloom Color:

Bright Yellow

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse

From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:

Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed

Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds

Seed does not store well; sow as soon as possible


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Seward, Alaska

Two Rivers, Alaska

Amesti, California

Corralitos, California

Elkhorn, California

Interlaken, California

Pajaro, California

Watsonville, California

Peyton, Colorado

Wyanet, Illinois

Farmington, Maine

Amherst, Massachusetts

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Billings, Montana

Florence, Montana

Missoula, Montana

Silver Springs, Nevada

Spring Creek, Nevada

Farmington, New Mexico

Charlotte, North Carolina

Belfield, North Dakota

Medora, North Dakota

Duchesne, Utah

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On May 15, 2016, Keith2 from Charlotte, NC (Zone 7b) wrote:

Have grown in a container for a couple of years in Charlotte 7b and it survives hard freezes. No blooms yet, so am thinking it needs a bigger container or ground-planting. Will do that and report back . . . Happily, deer ignore it :-)


On Apr 19, 2013, xeriman from Farmington, NM wrote:

Does well in NW New Mexico (where avg. annual precipitation is about 8 inches) with little to no irrigation once established. Evasiveness is not a problem here since soil moisture is very dry in spring.


On Nov 28, 2012, vonPalm wrote:

It grows well in Scandinavia, and is used for hedges. However, it is not recommended since it is prone to powdery mildew. It would be interesting to know if it exist strains resistant to powdery mildew? And if a plant get the disease, will this affect amount or quality of seed pods?


On Aug 5, 2012, an1955 from Florence, MT wrote:

My Caragana hedge starts out great and full in the spring, then gets powdery mildew and starts loosing its leaves. Have sprayed with a copper solution but this does not seem to help. What to do?


On Oct 11, 2011, RJBreeden from Silver Springs, NV wrote:

It also grows well in Northern Nevada. We have wind daily and sometimes very strong. This plant is a excellent wind break and as noted above grows well under neglect.


On May 17, 2011, jtellerelsberg from Norwich, VT (Zone 5a) wrote:

See the 'Pendula' cultivar for a version that is more attractive (to my mind) than the standard form, and also thornless. The seedpods and seeds are not only edible for chickens. Plants for a Future gives it a 5 out of 5 rating for edibility for people, too. I haven't tasted them myself yet, so can't vouch for this. Caraganas fix nitrogen, making them good companion plants.


On Jul 4, 2009, joeyjo from Tridell, UT (Zone 4b) wrote:

I love this shrub. Yes, it is thorny, but so are roses. The doves come every year to eat the seeds when the pods burst. During the depression, farmers used the seed to feed their chickens. Since I raise poultry, I plan to gather the seeds and start them this fall in my greenhouse (sorry doves).


On Jun 4, 2009, Marlina from Blaine, MN (Zone 4b) wrote:

We were just up North camping and noticed this shrub because of the Hummingbirds . They were just nuts for them. Wouldn't leave them alone . I was thinking of getting one but am conserned about it's invasive nature.


On Jun 1, 2007, SummerLion from Two Rivers, AK (Zone 1) wrote:

I'm interested to see that this plant is considered invasive in Alaska. When we bought this house in 1999, the previous owners had just planted a long line of them along the drive. They were approximately 2 ft. tall then, and they're about 8 ft. tall now.

They are self-sowing: The seed pods burst and fling the seed as far as several feet away, and we now have new plants across the driveway and in the yard.

They're also thorny, which makes pruning no fun.

They are good as screens and windbreaks, and the birds really seem to like them as cover, but because of the overabundance of upstarts (and now this notice that it's a nuisance plant), I wouldn't recommend it.


On Oct 3, 2006, darylmitchell from Saskatoon, SK (Zone 3a) wrote:

Caraganas are extremely hardy; they are tolerant of drought and extreme cold. They prefer full sull but can tolerate some shade, and also can tolerate some saline conditions. Caraganas need well drained soil and cannot withstand repeated flooding. They have been planted extensively in rural shelterbelts on the Canadian prairies.


On Feb 24, 2005, ebella wrote:

This plant is considered invasive in many areas, especially northern regions, as it escapes cultivation and has the potential to widely spread in previously pristine natural areas. I work for the Forest Service in Alaska as an Ecologist in our Seward office, and this plant is being included in an upcoming multi-agency invasive plants book for Alaska, with the recommendation that it not be purchased, planted, traded, or grown.

Thanks so much, Elizabeth Bella


On Aug 18, 2004, BingsBell from SC, MT (Zone 5a) wrote:

A good shrub for hiding fences, I use mine in rows to help with wind barriers along with evergreens. Once established, they don't require much including water. They seem to be pest resistant.


On Apr 7, 2004, gardener51 from Omaha, NE (Zone 4b) wrote:

This shrub is very hardy and can even be grown in a container large enough for the roots and live through the winter.