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Coffee colubrina, Greenheart
Colubrina arborescens

Copyright by: George D. Gann, 2004
In habitat, Long Pine Key, Florida

General Landscape Uses: Accent tree. Also useful in buffer plantings.

Ecological Restoration Notes: A somewhat rare element of hammock edges in the Florida Keys and southern Miami-Dade County.

Availability: Grown by one or two native plant nurseries in South Florida.

Description: Small tree or large shrub, usually with an erect trunk and a broad-spreading, semi-open crown. Leaves light green, with rusty-brown hairs on the underside of the leaves and on the twigs.

Dimensions: Typically 10-20 feet in height. Usually taller than broad.

Growth Rate: Fast.

Range: Monroe, Miami-Dade and Collier counties; West Indies, Mexico, Central America and South America. Rare in the Monroe County Keys and very rare or absent in the middle Keys. In Miami-Dade County, native to the Miami Rock Ridge from Long Pine Key in Everglades National Park north and east to west of Goulds. For a digitized image of Elbert Little's Florida range map, visit the Exploring Florida website.

Plant Map Map of select IRC data from peninsular Florida.

 Map of suggested ZIP codes from South Florida north to southern Brevard, Osceola, Polk, and Pasco counties.

 Map of ZIP codes with habitat recommendations from the Monroe County Keys north to Martin and Charlotte counties.

Habitats: Rockland hammocks; understory shrub in pine rocklands.

Soils: Moist, well-drained limestone or calcareous sandy soils, with humusy top layer.

Nutritional Requirements: Moderate; can grow in nutrient poor soils, but needs some organic content to thrive.

Salt Water Tolerance: Low; does not tolerate long-term flooding by salt or brackish water.

Salt Wind Tolerance: Low; salt wind may burn the leaves.

Drought Tolerance: Moderate; generally requires moist soils, but tolerant of short periods of drought once established.

Light Requirements: Full sun.

Flower Color: Greenish or yellowish.

Flower Characteristics: Inconspicuous.

Flowering Season: All year.

Fruit: Purple to black capsule.

Wildlife and Ecology: Provides food for birds.

Horticultural Notes: Can be grown from seed. Place in light shade or full sun.

References: Miami-Dade County Landscape Manual (2005).

Comments: Recruits readily from seeds in the garden and can become somewhat weedy. It is listed as endangered by the state of Florida.

Copyright by: George D. Gann, 2004
In habitat, Long Pine Key, Florida

Copyright by: James Johnson, 2014
In habitat, Everglades National Park, Florida

Copyright by: George D. Gann, 2011
In habitat, Dominican Republic

Copyright by: Roger L. Hammer

Copyright by: George D. Gann

Copyright by: George D. Gann

Other data on Colubrina arborescens available from:

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