Your Questions Answered

How do I qualify?

To be accepted as a World Tree farmer you must meet the following minimum criteria:

  • Farmland in zones 7 through 11
  • Elevation less than 2200 feet
  • Clay sandy loam soil or better
  • At least 20 acres of available land

What do I get?

Farmers in the program receive:

  • A minimum of 2200 trees (20 acres)
  • Individualized support to ensure successful growth
  • Access to the ‘Growers Guide’ and online support materials
  • 50% share of all the profits of the sale of the lumber
  • Lumber currently sells for $3-$14 per board foot or more, depending on quality
  • A well managed plantation produces 30,000 board feet of lumber per acre
  • A buyer for the lumber that World Tree brings to you
  • You keep the trees after the first harvest

Your success is our success. World Tree only makes money when you do and we will be your partner every step of the way in making sure that your trees grow and are well managed so that they produce the highest quality lumber.

If you would like to gain experience growing Paulownia you can also talk to us about the Intro Package for Farmers.

About the Empress tree

Genus: Paulownia
Growing zone: 7-11
Soil: Clay, sand loam or better
Elevation: Less than 2200 ft
Time to maturity: 10 years
Sells for: $3-$14 per board foot
Board foot per acre: 30,000

Frequently Asked Questions

Why are these trees free?
This initiative is funded by investors who are looking to buy Empress Splendor trees to offset their carbon emissions. They want our trees, but they don’t have the land or expertise to grow them.

That’s where you come in. We need farmers to grow these trees on our behalf. When the trees reach maturity, the profits are split between you, the investors and World Tree. You receive 50% of the profits and the partners and World Tree receive 25% each.

How much money can I expect to make?
Your actual return is dependent on the sale of lumber. Good quality lumber currently sells between $3 and $14 per board foot and more, depending on the quality and finish of the lumber. A well managed plantation produces 145,000 board feet of lumber.

How do I qualify for the program?
To participate in the program, you must have at least 20 acres of available land in a suitable growing zone (zones 7-11). Soil quality should be clay/sandy loam or better and the water table needs to be at least 6 – 8 feet below the surface. We will work with you to assess whether your land is suitable for Empress Splendor trees and may suggest you start with a trial 1-acre parcel of trees to start with.

How and when do I get my trees?
The best time to plant bare root Empress Splendor trees in North America is in late April or early May. We will call you to let you know your trees are ready to be shipped, answer your questions and make sure you are ready to plant them. It is important that you plant the trees within a few days of receiving them.

Who owns the trees?
The partnership of investors who purchased the trees are the owners of the trees. You enter into an agreement with World Tree to grow the trees and share in the proceeds.

Will there be a contract?
Yes. After your acceptance into the Carbon Offset program, you will enter into a  partnership agreement with World Tree.

The terms of the contract include bi-annual reporting so that we can track the progress of your trees.

How many trees do I get?
You will receive a minimum of 20 acres of trees (110 trees per acre). Larger numbers of trees will be provided based on the amount of land you have and availability. Trees will be allocated to farmers on a first come first served basis.

Do the trees require a lot of care? How can I be sure they will grow well?
Empress Splendor trees need to be hand planted in the first year and pruned as required into the 3rd and 4th years. Our customer support team and grower’s guide will be made available to you to make sure that the trees are grown successfully. Our goal is to help you grow the best quality of lumber that will fetch the highest possible price when it is harvested.

You are responsible for growing the trees when they arrive and taking care of them as they mature. We will periodically send a World Tree specialist to visit you in person. They will support you in answering any questions, maximizing your crop, and ensuring a successful harvest. 

What happens if I lose my trees?
The Empress Splendor is naturally fire retardant, termite and drought resistant making it a very resilient crop. All the same, it is possible that severe weather conditions could impact your plantation. We expect you to be in communication with our support team if anything untoward happens to your trees.

If you lose your trees in the first two years for any reason other than negligence, World Tree will replace your trees. After the first two years the trees will be covered by crop insurance.

The insurance only covers severe weather, fire or other ‘acts of God’. If you lose your trees through neglect or poor maintenance and we are unable to work with you to find a solution, you will be removed from the program.

What happens to the trees when they mature?
Once the trees reach maturity, World Tree will sell them for lumber. Our intention is to get the best possible price for all the wood that is sold by our farmers. Since World Tree receives 25% of the proceeds of the sale, it is in our best interest to get the highest possible price for the wood.

You also have the option to buy the logs yourself at market price. This may be a good option for you if you have a mill and/or you feel you can get a higher price for the lumber.

Once the lumber has been sold, the proceeds are split three ways. The farmer receives 50% of the proceeds, while the partners and World Tree receive 25% each.

Once harvested, the trees regenerate from the root.

What happens to future harvests?
Once harvested, Empress Splendor™ trees regenerate from the root and they will do this up to 7 times. In other words, your trees will keep on re-growing and can be harvested up to 7 times.

After the first harvest, the trees are 100% yours and you keep all of the proceeds from growing the trees. This creates an on-going revenue stream for you and the next generation. If you would like World Tree to help you brokerage the lumber, we are happy to do that for 10% of the proceeds.

Is the Empress Splendor tree invasive?
No, the Empress Splendor tree is not invasive.

The Empress Splendor tree belongs to the genus Paulownia. There are many different species of Paulownia and there is only one that is classified as invasive, the Paulownia tomentosa ( We do not use this variety, choosing instead non-invasive species such as the Paulownia fortuneii.

The Rainforest Alliance has chosen Paulownia as an an ecologically sound tree for the purposes of eforestation and carbon sequestration ( The Rainforest alliance is internationally recognized as a certification program for sustainable forestry and best practices for tree planting and agroforestry.

The World Tree Carbon Offset Program

Sustainability with Dividends


Call toll-free 1-888-693-TREE (8733)

 For Farmers
please complete the form opposite
to find out how you can join
the World Tree Carbon Offset Program 

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