Selected Trees and Shrubs
Caesalpinia pulcherrima, Common name: Barbados Pride, Dwarf Poinciana, Peacock Flower
Plant Family: Belongs to the Caesalpiniaceae family, which includes Flamboyant (Delonix regia) and Orchid Tree (Bauhinia variegata).
Description: Showy, very attractive, erect shrub or small tree, up to 4 m tall (13 ft), with prickly branches, flowering all year; leaves bipinnately compound, about 30 cm or more long (12 in), with opposite, oblong leaflets, about 10 pairs, each 1.5-2.5 cm long (0.6-1 in); flowers, in raceme clusters at branch ends, usually red, 4-6 cm across (1.5-2.5 in); red petals have bright yellow fringe in young flowers; stamens and pistil, extending well beyond petals, are twice as long as petals; fruit a flat pod, 8-12 cm long (3-5 in); yellow and pink varieties not uncommon.
Natural Habitat: Thrives at lower elevations in tropics; is sun loving and drought tolerant, blooming best in full sun on well drained soils; propagated by seed.
Origin and Distribution: Of uncertain origin, but probably native of West Indies, India or tropical Asia; now cultivated throughout tropics and much of sub-tropics.
Uses: Primarily cultivated ornamental shrub, as single specimen or in hedges; green seeds may be eaten cooked, when ripe yield tannin and yellow (with alum) or black (with iron) dye; root, leaf, flower and seed used variously in indigenous medicines in the Guianas, S. America – for stomachache, gall bladder problems, kidney stones, to accelerate childbirth, as an abortifuge, among other ailments.
H.F. Macmillan. Tropical Planting and Gardening. Macmillan, London 1956
C.D. Adams. Flowering Plants of Jamaica. University of the West Indies, Mona, Glasgow University Press 1972
G.W. Lennox and S.A. Seddon. Flowers of the Caribbean. Macmillan, London 1978
Plant Families. Botany Dept, Univ. of Hawaii, Hawaii, 2004 (botany.hawaii.edu)
Caesalpinia pulcherrima. Floridata. Tallahassee, Florida, 2004 (floridata.com)
Robert A. DeFilipps. Useful Plants of the Commonwealth of Dominica, West Indies. Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C. 1998
Robert A. DeFilipps, et al. Medicinal Plants of the Guianas. Smithsonian Institution, Washinton, D.C. n.d. (mnh.si.edu)
Preface - How it Began
Introduction to Website
A Brief History
Plan of Gardens
Trees, Shrubs, Birds:
Selected Trees and Shrubs
Florida's Fairchild Garden
Birds of the Gardens
Three Virtual Tours
Panoramic Views Today
Early Panoramic Views
Hurricane David's Ravages
Reports and Documents
Treasures of the Cathedral
Diaspora Policy Paper
Contact Site Coordinator