Large tree with a broad crown. Leaves deciduous, twice as long as wide, narrowly ovate to cordate, upper surface glabrous, lower surface with dense stellate tomentum, margins entire to undulate, apex acuminate. Inflorescences pyramidal or narrowly conical, usually less than 35 cm long. Flowers hermaphrodite; calyx campanulate, less than 2 cm wide and largely glabrous; corolla pale purple with dark purple spots inside, tubular, 7–8 × 3.5 cm at its widest point. Capsule ellipsoid, covered with stellate tomentum, 4.5–5.5 cm long. Flowering from April, fruiting July to August (China). Hong et al. 1998. Distribution CHINA: Hebei, Henan, Shandong, Shanxi. Habitat Low elevations. USDA Hardiness Zone 7. Conservation status Not evaluated. Illustration Hong et al. 1998. Taxonomic note A putative hybrid between P. catalpifolia and P. tomentosa has been described as P. ×henanensis C.Y. Zhang & Y.H. Zhao (Hong et al. 1998).
Paulownia catalpifolia is still little known in horticulture, although it is a recommended species for plantations in cooler areas (World Paulownia Europe 2007–2008) and is freely available in commerce. It has rather pale flowers but they are generously produced, in areas with hot summers.
P. coreana Uyeki S354
P. elongata S.Y. Hu K360
P. fargesii Franch. S353, K360
P. fortunei (Seem.) Hemsl. B100, K361
P. glabrata (NOW P. tomentosa var. tsinlingensis (Y.Y. Pai) T. Gong) K361
P. kawakamii T. Itô S353, K361
P. lilacina (NOW P. tomentosa (Thunb.) Steud.) B101