White-cedar

 
 

White-cedar is native to the Antilles. It reaches a height of 60 feet, with a trunk 2 feet in diameter. The crown is typically columnar. The leaves have five leaflets, the largest up to 6 inches long. In dry areas the number of leaflets may decrease to three or just one. Flowers are approximately 2.5 inches long and appear in groups and the ends of branches; they are generally light pink, varying from white to deep pink depending on the tree and the locality. Fruits are up to 8 inches long and open on both sides to release many winged seeds. It loses most of its leaves during late winter and covers itself in flowers during spring, some flowering occurs throughout the year. It has fruits during most of the year. The generic name derives from a Brazilian indian name for another species of the genus. The species name refers to the variation in the number of leaflets.


The photographed tree is east of the Nursing Building. There are many other trees in the campus, the most showy being those growing between the General Library and the Chardón Building. The leaves are susceptible to attack by a thrip that shrivels them and young stems are frequently attacked by a boring beetle. The tree is also susceptible to the growth of ball moss (Tillandsia recurvata) and other epiphytes.

Tabebuia heterophylla (Bignoniaceae)