If you’ve ever seen the Royal Poinciana in flower chances are you’ve never forgotten it. This magnificent tree has a spreading, flat-topped crown often wider than the tree is tall. Usually covered with tender green leaflets, in late spring and early summer it bursts into extravagant bloom. The flowers range from bright yellow to soft orange to deepest red, evoking the colors of a summer sunset.
As the wind blows, the ground below becomes carpeted with a magical blanket of colorful blooms. Children especially love to picnic beneath the spreading limbs of this beautiful shade tree.
Popular in and around Miami, this hardy tree grows quickly in most soils and once it reaches full maturity needs watering only during the severest droughts. For best results, prune away smaller low-growing branches on young trees to ensure adequate clearance beneath the broad, spreading canopy. Although Royal Poinciana is wind-resistant, removing larger branches that approach half the size of the trunk will help the tree maintain stability.
Royal Poinciana is a favorite for frontages without sidewalks or as a specimen tree in large yards away from driveways or pavement. You won’t have trouble directing visitors to your home when this flamboyant beauty is in bloom.