Poinciana trees

poinciana tree

   Poinciana trees are small, broad-topped trees with large, brightly colored flowers. They grow in the tropical areas of the world. They belong to the pea family.
   The royal poinciana is one of the most striking tropical trees. It grows 20 to 40 feet tall, spreading wide at its top. Its leaves are one to two feet long, each divided into many small leaflets. The five petals of the flower are orange or scarlet and have uneven edges. Ten stamens stand up from the petals. The seeds are contained in pods which are flat and from six inches to two feet long. This species is native to Madagascar but is cultivated in southern Florida and other warm areas where the colorful plant blooms mostly in the summer.
   The dwarf poinciana is a ten-foot shrub with prickly branches. It has delicate leaves and orange or yellow flowers, each two inches across. It is widely distributed throughout the tropics.