Catalpa, commonly called catalpa or catawba, is a genus of flowering plants in the family Bignoniaceae, native to warm temperate and subtropical regions of North America, the Caribbean, and East Asia.
Most Catalpa are deciduous trees; they typically grow to 12–18 metres (40–60 ft) tall, with branches spreading to a diameter of about 6–12 metres (20–40 ft). They are fast growers and a 10-year-old sapling may stand about 6 metres (20 ft) tall. They have characteristic large, heart-shaped leaves, which in some species are three-lobed. The appearance of the leaves sometimes causes confusion with species such as the unrelated tung tree (Vernicia fordii) and Paulownia tomentosa. Catalpa species bear broad panicles of showy flowers, generally in summer. The flower colour generally is white to yellow. In late summer or autumn the fruit appear; they are siliques about 20–50 centimetres (8–20 in) long, full of small flat seeds, each with two thin wings to aid in wind dispersal.