Step inside Columbarium Court 3, and the burgundy colors of Persian ironwood (Parrotia persica) trees immediately warm the cool crisp air. Their wavy-edged leaves, lustrous green in the summer, have finally exposed their beautiful autumn colors.
Persian ironwood is a medium size tree native to Iran. If planted in fertile soil, it can grow in the Northern Virginia area, albeit very slowly. It is a four-season tree with stunning attributes for winter, spring, summer and fall. If you happen to miss the fall colors of this underutilized tree, come back later in the winter and you’ll find little red flowers peeking out.
This tree only gets better with age. The bark, while almost a solid gray at first, matures into a mottled gray exfoliating bark.
Please enjoy this tree and all of the other Memorial Arboretum trees that the cemetery has to offer.