General Landscape Uses:
An accent or specimen shrub or small tree. Also useful in buffer plantings and informal hedges.
Ecological Restoration Notes:
A common element of coastal hammocks and thickets.
Widely cultivated. Available in Boynton Beach at
(561-245-5305), in Lake Worth at
Indian Trails Native Nursery
(561-540-6296) and in Homestead at
Plant Creations Inc.
large shrub or small upright tree with a slender crown composed of short branches. Foliage dense in sun, becoming open in shade. Trunks 2-6 inches in diameter. Bark dark red brown, rough. Leaves smooth and shiny above, rusty beneath, 2-3 inches long.
Typically 6-12 feet in height, sometimes more. Taller than broad.
Slow to moderate.
Monroe County Keys north along the coasts to Brevard, Hillsborough and Pinellas counties; West Indies, Mexico and Central America. For a digitized image of Elbert Little's Florida range map, visit the
Map of select IRC data from peninsular Florida.
Map of suggested ZIP codes north to Indian River and Manatee counties.
Map of ZIP codes with habitat recommendations north to Martin and Charlotte counties. Habitats:
Moist, well-drained sandy or limestone soils, with humusy top layer.
Moderate to high; grows best with some organic content and may languish in nutrient poor soils.
Salt Water Tolerance:
Low; does not tolerate long-term flooding by salt or brackish water.
Salt Wind Tolerance:
High; can tolerate moderate amounts of salt wind without injury.
High; does not require any supplemental water once established.
Full sun to light shade.
Opens white, turning pink within a few hours.
Showy, brushlike, 1 1/2" long. Fragrant, mostly so in the evening.
Spring-summer; peak in spring.
Brown capsule, 9-12" long, rupturing irregularly with age, exposing the red interior; summer.
Wildlife and Ecology:
Provides food and cover for wildlife.
Larval host plant
for Florida white (Appias drusilla) butterflies. Attracts pollinators.
Grown from seed, which need to be scarified. Start in shade and move to full sun after true leaves are formed. Germination is within a month.
This is an excellent plant for coastal gardens. See also the Florida Wildflower Foundation's