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Peltophorum pterocarpum

Pronunciation: Pel-toh-for-um ter-oh-kar-pum
Family: Fabaceae/leguminosae (bean family)
Synonym: Caesalpinia ferruginea, caesalpinia inermis
Common Name: Yellow poinciana, yellow flame tree, copper-pod, yellow flamboyant tree
Plant Type:
  • trees, shrubs
Height to: 50'
USDA Hardiness Zones:
  • 40 to 30ºF ZONE 10
  • 50 to 40ºF ZONE 11
Sun Exposure:
  • part sun
Bloom Season:
  • early summer
Bloom Description: The fragrant flowers are clustered on upright stalks (racemes, actually) about 18" long. Each flower is about an inch and a half across with translucent yellow, strangely-crinkled petals. The flowers have conspicuous orange stamens and each petal has a reddish brown mark in the center. They are followed by purplish brown, flattened, oblong seed pods, 3-4" long, which remain on the tree until the next flowering season.
Soil Type: Moist, but well-drained soil.
Propagation: Propagation of yellow poinciana is by seeds that must be treated before they will germinate. In nature, the seeds would have passed through the gut of a bird or mammal before germinating in a pile of rich "compost. " we simulate that process with scarification (use a file or sandpaper), or a two-minute immersion in dilute acid or boiling water.
Native to: Coastal areas from sri lanka through the malay archipelago and indonesia to northern australia. It has escaped from cultivation and established itself in disturbed areas in southern florida and hawaii.
Notes for Identification: Yellow poincianas are usually planted as specimen trees or as shade trees. They are used as street trees in tropical cities, and commonly planted for shade in tropical and subtropical gardens. They are fast-growing and vigorous, but they cannot tolerate frost.  
Located in: Seed Photos
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