Thyrses: bracts absent. Pedicels present; bracteoles absent. Flowers: calyx campanulate, lobes ovate to broadly ovate or oblong; corolla lavender, pinkish purple, or purple externally, whitish or yellowish internally on palate and lined with reddish purple nectar guides, abaxial lobes 3, adaxial 2; stamens: filaments glabrous; stigma capitate. Seeds: margins winged, wings clear or tan. x = 20.
Asia (China), introduced also in Europe, e Asia.
Species 7 (1 in the flora).
Paulownias long have held mythical, spiritual, cultural, and economic significance in China and Japan (Hu S. Y. 1959, 1961). The wood of some species is highly prized in Asia; Paulownia tomentosa is grown in the United States in plantations for wood that is exported to Japan.
The fossil record provides evidence of Paulownia in North America and Europe during the Tertiary (C. J. Smiley 1961).