Yellow poinciana


Yellow poinciana, or copper pod, is native to Southeast Asia, from Sri Lanka to the Philippines and northern Australia. In its native distribution it reaches a height of 100 feet, with a trunk 3 feet in diameter. The leaves are up to 16 inches long and twice-compund. Flowers are grouped in terminal inflorescences up to 1 foot long. Fruits are pods up to 4.5 inches long, initially green, then copper-colored, and finally almost black. It flowers from spring to autumn and fruits mature during fall and winter. The generic name means shield-bearer; according to some sources in reference to the shape of the flower’s stigma, according to others in reference to the shape of the pods. The species name means winged fruit.

The photographed trees are in the Physics Building parking lot. There are four other trees around this building, all planted by Manuel A. Pérez.  This tree is also known as yellow flamboyant, but today this name is commonly applied to the flamboyant-tree variety that produces yellow flowers.

Peltophorum pterocarpum (Fabaceae)