The Dalbergia sissoo or sissoo tree is an evergreen or semi-deciduous tree native to Pakistan, India and Nepal that has become widely naturalized throughout tropical parts of the world. It is an easy-to-grow species that provides heavy year-round shade.
Sissoo trees are hardy in United States Department of Agriculture hardiness zones 9 to 11, which includes cities such as Miami, Florida, and Honolulu, Hawaii. Young trees can suffer from winter damage if exposed to temperatures below 28 degrees Fahrenheit, while older trees will lose their leaves. Sissoo trees prefer full sunlight and grow in a variety of different soil types.
Sissoo trees need deep irrigation at least once a week during summer, particularly in dry areas of the country, as well as monthly irrigation during the winter. They are susceptible to broken limbs and frost damage, so young trees need to be pruned during the winter months to develop a strong structure and attractive form.
Whiteflies suck sap from sissoo foliage, and Gunnar bees feed on the leaves. Trees are prone to chlorosis, or yellowing, in alkaline soils; gardeners address the problem by treating the soil with magnesium sulfate fertilizers and iron chelate formulas. Sissoo trees have a moderate tolerance for drought, but they are intolerant of soil salinity.
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