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Biology

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The beautiful flowers of the flame tree are pollinated by birds (2). The flowers are produced in spring and summer and the leaves are shed in the dry season (2).
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Conservation

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Although widely cultivated around the world and widely loved for its dazzling display of flowers in spring and summer, unfortunately the native populations of the flame tree are classified as globally Vulnerable by the IUCN Red List (1).
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Description

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The flame tree, also known as royal poinciana or flamboyant, is a member of the bean family (Leguminosae) and is widely regarded as one of the most beautiful tropical trees in the world (2) (1) (3). This aptly named tree produces striking flame-like scarlet and yellow flowers in spring before the leaves emerge (2) (3). As the trees mature, they develop broad umbrella-shaped crowns, and are often planted for their shade-giving properties (2). The delicate, fern-like leaves are composed of small individual leaflets, which fold up at the onset of dusk (2). This tree produces brown, woody seed pods that reach lengths of up to 60 cm (2) (3); they turn reddish-brown to almost black when ripe (4).
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Habitat

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This tropical tree can grow in a wide range of habitats, including disturbed sites (3). It grows in full sun and can tolerate sandy, loamy, clay, acidic and alkaline soils (5).
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Range

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This tree is native to west and north Madagascar (1), but it has been widely cultivated elsewhere (3).
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Status

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Classified as Vulnerable (VU B1+2c) on the IUCN Red List 2003 (1).
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Threats

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Habitat destruction has been particularly severe in Madagascar. Most of the human population of the island are found in rural communities dependent on the resources of the forest for survival (6). Since humans arrived on the island around 2000 years ago, a staggering 80% of the forest cover has been lost (6). The major native populations of the flame tree which occur around Antsiranana are found in areas greatly threatened by charcoal production (1).
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Comprehensive Description

provided by North American Flora
Delonix regia (Bojer) Raf. Fl. Tell. 2: 92. 1836
Poinciana regia Bojer; Hook. Bot. Mag. pi. 2884. 1829.
A widely branched tree, reaching a maximum height of about 12 m. with a trunk up to 9 dm. in diameter, flanged at the base, the thin bark gray-brown, the twigs somewhat pubescent. I/Caves 3-5 dm. long; petiole stout, reddish or yellow, 7-12 cm. long; pinnae 10-25 pairs, short-stalked, 8-15 cm. long, the rachis pubescent; leaflets 20-40 pairs, oblong, puberulent on both sides, 4-10 mm. long, inequilateral, rounded at both ends; pedicels stout, 4-8 cm. long; petals spreading and reflexed, 5-7 cm. long, orange to scarlet and mottled; stamens shorter than the petals; legume 4-6 dm. long, 5-7 cm. wide, dark brown.
Type locality: Madagascar.
Distribution: Naturalized in Porto Rico, St. Croix and St. Thomas. Native of Madagascar. Widely planted for ornament in tropical and subtropical regions.
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bibliographic citation
Nathaniel Lord Britton and Joseph Nelson Rose. 1928. (ROSALES); MIMOSACEAE. North American flora. vol 23(1). New York Botanical Garden, New York, NY
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Physical Description

provided by USDA PLANTS text
Perennial, Trees, Woody throughout, Stems erect or ascending, Stems or branches arching, spreading or decumbent, Stems greater than 2 m tall, Stems solid, Stems or young twigs glabrous or sparsely glabrate, Leaves alternate, Leaves petiolate, Stipules conspicuous, Stipules deciduous, Stipules free, Stipules toothed or laciniate, Leaves compound, Leaves bipinnate, Leaf or leaflet margins entire, Leaflets opposite, Leaflets 10-many, Leaves glabrous or nearly so, Leaves hairy on one or both surfaces, Inflorescences racemes, Inflorescence panicles, Inflorescence terminal, Bracts very small, absent or caducous, Flowers actinomorphic or somewhat irregular, Calyx 5-lobed, Calyx glabrous, Petals separate, Petals clawed, Petals red, Petals orange or yellow, Stamens 9-10, Stamens completely free, separate, Stamens monadelphous, united below, Stamens long exserted, Filaments hairy, villous, Filaments pink or red, Style terete, Fruit a legume, Fruit stipitate, Fruit unilocular, Fruit tardily or weakly dehiscent, Fruit elongate, straight, Fruit oblong or ellipsoidal, Fruit or valves persistent on stem, Fruit coriaceous or becoming woody, Fruit exserted from calyx, Fruit glabrous or glabrate, Fruit 11-many seeded, Seeds ovoid to rounded in outline, Seed surface smooth, Seeds olive, brown, or black.
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Delonix regia

provided by wikipedia EN

Delonix regia is a species of flowering plant in the bean family Fabaceae, subfamily Caesalpinioideae native to Madagascar. It is noted for its fern-like leaves and flamboyant display of orange-red flowers over summer. In many tropical parts of the world it is grown as an ornamental tree and in English it is given the name royal poinciana, flamboyant, flame of the forest, or flame tree (one of several species given this name).

This species was previously placed in the genus Poinciana, named for Phillippe de Longvilliers de Poincy, the 17th century governor of Saint Christopher (Saint Kitts). It is a non-nodulating legume.

Description

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Frontal, lateral and backside view of a flower
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Gulmahor tree (Delonix regia) with flowers, Haridwar, India.
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Flower, leaves & pods (Kolkata, West Bengal, India)
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Delonix regia var. flavida is a rarer, yellow-flowered variety.[3]
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Close-up of part of a leaf

The flowers of Delonix regia are large, with four spreading scarlet or orange-red petals up to 8 cm (3 in) long, and a fifth upright petal called the standard, which is slightly larger and spotted with yellow and white. They appear in corymbs along and at the ends of branches. The naturally occurring variety flavida (Bengali: Radhachura) has yellow flowers.[3] The pods are green and flaccid when young and turn dark-brown and woody. They can be up to 60 cm (24 in) long and 5 cm (2 in) wide. The seeds are small, weighing around 0.4 grams (6.2 grains) on average. The compound (doubly pinnate) leaves have a feathery appearance and are a characteristic light, bright green. Each leaf is 30–50 cm (12–20 in) long with 20 to 40 pairs of primary leaflets or pinnae, each divided into 10–20 pairs of secondary leaflets or pinnules. Pollen grains are elongated, approximately 52 µm in size.

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Pollen grains of Delonix regia

Distribution

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Flower (Kibbutz Ginnosar, Israel)
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Flowering tree (Island of Mauritius)
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Close up of bark
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Seed pods visible on upper branches (Gordonvale, Queensland, Australia)

Delonix regia is endemic to Madagascar's dry deciduous forests, but has been introduced into tropical and sub-tropical regions worldwide. In the wild it is endangered, but it is widely cultivated elsewhere and is regarded as naturalised in many of the locations where it is grown:

North America

In the continental United States, it grows in South Florida, Central Florida,[4] and in the Rio Grande Valley of South Texas as well as humid parts of Mexico, especially in the Yucatan peninsula.

Caribbean and Central America

In the Caribbean it is featured in many Dominican and Puerto Rican paintings. It can also be found in Belize, The Bahamas, Cuba, Haiti, Nicaragua, U.S. Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Grenada, Jamaica and Curaçao. It is the national flower of St. Kitts and Nevis. It can also be found in Bermuda, and Hawaii. The town of Peñuelas, Puerto Rico, located about 12 miles or 19 kilometers west of Ponce, is nicknamed El Valle de los Flamboyanes ("The Valley of the Poinciana Trees"), as many flamboyant trees are found along the surrounding Río Guayanes, Río Macana, and Río Tallaboa rivers.

South America

It grows in Paraguay, Peru and throughout the whole of Brazil.[5][6]

Europe and the Middle East

Delonix regia is planted in Mediterranean parts of Europe, the Middle east and North Africa, including the southern coast of Spain, the Valencian coast, the Canary Islands, Lebanon, Egypt, Iran, Israel, Jordan and Cyprus.

Subcontinent

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A bonnet macaque eating flowers

The tree is planted in India, where it is referred to as the May-flower tree, Gulmohar or Gul Mohr.[7] In West Bengal, Odisha it is called krushnachuda(কৃষ্ণচূড়া/କୃଷ୍ଣଚୂଡ଼ା). In Sri Lanka it is known in Sinhala as the Maara tree, although for a short while it was known as the Lamaasuriya tree after Le Mesurier, the British civil servant who was responsible for introducing it as a shade tree.[8] It is also grown in Karachi, Pakistan. In Mauritius and La Réunion it announces the coming of the new year.

In Bangladesh it known as krisnachura(কৃষ্ণচূড়া).you can see this tree in various places of Bangladesh.

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Crescent lake dhaka with delonix ragia

Southeast Asia

In Myanmar, where it is called Sein-pann-ni, the time of flowering is March in the south and early to late April in the north. It is planted in gardens and as a roadside tree. In Myanmar, this tree is a sign of Thingyan Festival (13–16/17 April). In the Philippines, its flowering signals the imminent arrival of the monsoon rains. It also grows in Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam.

East Asia

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New leaves and fruits in the early morning light.

It grows in Southern China such as Hong Kong. It is the official tree in Tainan, Taiwan; Xiamen, Fujian Province, and Shantou, Canton Province, People's Republic of China. National Cheng Kung University, a university located in Tainan, put royal poinciana on its emblem.

Australia

It is very widely grown in the Northern Australia, the southern extremes previously limited to South East Queensland where it is a popular street tree in the suburbs of Brisbane. It now grows and blooms successfully in Sydney and other parts of New South Wales.

Micronesia

It grows in Guam, and is the official tree of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.

Cultivation

Required conditions

The royal poinciana requires a tropical or near-tropical climate, but can tolerate drought and salty conditions. It prefers an open, free-draining sandy or loamy soil enriched with organic matter. The tree does not like heavy or clay soils and flowers more profusely when kept slightly dry.

Propagation

Seeds

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Seeds after soaking them in water for 6 days

The royal poinciana is most commonly propagated by seeds. Seeds are collected, soaked in warm water for at least 24 hours, and planted in warm, moist soil in a semi-shaded, sheltered position. In lieu of soaking, the seeds can also be "nicked" or "pinched" (with a small scissors or nail clipper) and planted immediately. These two methods allow moisture to penetrate the tough outer casing, stimulating germination. The seedlings grow rapidly and can reach 30 cm (12 in) in a few weeks under ideal conditions.

Cuttings

Less common, but just as effective, is propagation by semi-hardwood cuttings. Branches consisting of the current or last season's growth can be cut into 30 cm (12 in) sections and planted in a moist potting mixture. This method is slower than seed propagation (cuttings take a few months to root) but is the preferred method for ensuring new trees are true to form. As such, cuttings are a particularly common method of propagation for the rarer yellow-flowering variety of the tree.

Usefulness

In addition to its ornamental value, it is also a useful shade tree in tropical conditions, because it usually grows to a modest height (mostly 5 m or 15 ft, but it can reach a maximum height of 12 m or 40 ft) but spreads widely, and its dense foliage provides full shade. In areas with a marked dry season, it sheds its leaves during the drought, but in other areas it is virtually evergreen.

Flowering season

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Tree in Martin County, Florida, USA flowering in May
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Flowering branches in New Delhi, India in May
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Photo taken in May, Taiwan
  • Australia: November–February
  • Bangladesh: April–May
  • Bermuda: May–August
  • Brazil: October–February
  • Canary Islands: May–September
  • Caribbean: May–September
  • Congo DR: November–December
  • Dominican Republic: July–September
  • Egypt: May–June
  • South Florida: May–June
  • Hawaii: May–June
  • Hong Kong: May–June
  • Indian subcontinent: April–July
  • Israel: May–June
  • Lebanon: June–August
  • Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe: October–December
  • Malaysia : November–December
  • Northern Mariana Islands: March–June
  • Mauritius: November–December
  • Pakistan: April–May
  • Philippines: April–June
  • Peru (coast): January–March
  • Reunion Island: November–January
  • Southern Sudan: March–May
  •  src=
    Flowering branches in Pembroke Pines, Florida
    South Texas: May–June
  • Thailand: April–May
  • United Arab Emirates: May–July
  • Vietnam: May–July
  • Zanzibar: December

Cultural significance

In the Indian state of Kerala, royal poinciana is called kaalvarippoo (കാൽവരിപ്പൂവ്, kālvarippūv) which means "the flower of Calvary". There is a popular belief among Saint Thomas Christians of Kerala that when Jesus was crucified, there was a small royal poinciana tree nearby his Cross. It is believed that the blood of Jesus Christ was shed over the flowers of the tree and this is how the flowers of royal poinciana got a sharp red color.[9] It is also known as Vaaga in many areas of Kerala.

Its blossom is the national flower of St. Kitts and Nevis,[10] and in May 2018 the royal poinciana was adopted by the city of Key West as its official tree.[11] Known locally as semarak api, Delonix regia is the city flower of Sepang, Selangor, Malaysia.[12]

In Vietnam, this tree is called Phượng vỹ, or "phoenix's tail", and is a popular urban tree in much of Vietnam. Its flowering season is May–July, which coincides with the end of the school year in Vietnam. Because of this timing, the flower of poinciana is sometimes called the "pupil's flower". The tree is also commonly found on school grounds in Vietnam, however after several trees incidents where the tree fell on students, with one student killed, schools started cutting down or severely pruning the trees.[13] Hải Phòng is nicknamed Thành phố hoa phượng đỏ ("City of red poinciana").

The song "Poinciana" was inspired by the presence of this tree in Cuba.

References

  1. ^ Du Puy; D.; et al. (1998). "Delonix regia". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 1998. Retrieved 11 May 2006.old-form url
  2. ^ "Delonix regia (Hook.) Raf. — The Plant List". theplantlist.org.
  3. ^ a b Burke, Don (1 November 2005). The complete Burke's backyard: the ultimate book of fact sheets. Murdoch Books. p. 269. ISBN 978-1-74045-739-2. Retrieved 9 March 2011.
  4. ^ Gilman, Edward F. & Watson, Dennis G. (24 April 2019). "ENH387/ST228: Delonix regia: Royal Poinciana". ufl.edu.
  5. ^ "Smartphone Access". thewoodexplorer.com.
  6. ^ "Is that a poinciana?". GardenDrum. 5 February 2013.
  7. ^ Cowen, D. V. (1984). Flowering Trees and Shrubs in India (Sixth ed.). Bombay: Thacker and Co. Ltd. p. 1.
  8. ^ Devendra, Tissa (3 November 2020). "Lamasuriya trees". Island Newspaper. Colombo.
  9. ^ Thomas, Annamma (1984). Kerala Immigrants in America: A Sociological Study of the St. Thomas Christians. Simons Printers. p. 34.
  10. ^ "How We Are Governed, St. Kitts & Nevis - National Symbols".
  11. ^ Filosa, Gwen (16 May 2018). "It's invasive and filled with bugs. It's also pretty, and now Key West's official tree". FL Keys News.
  12. ^ "Bunga Rasmi Mpsepang". Portal Rasmi Majlis Perbandaran Sepang. Retrieved 6 December 2019.
  13. ^ "'Don't kill 'em all,' experts urge as schoolyard trees 'massacred' following fatal middle school accident". 8 June 2020.
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Delonix regia: Brief Summary

provided by wikipedia EN

Delonix regia is a species of flowering plant in the bean family Fabaceae, subfamily Caesalpinioideae native to Madagascar. It is noted for its fern-like leaves and flamboyant display of orange-red flowers over summer. In many tropical parts of the world it is grown as an ornamental tree and in English it is given the name royal poinciana, flamboyant, flame of the forest, or flame tree (one of several species given this name).

This species was previously placed in the genus Poinciana, named for Phillippe de Longvilliers de Poincy, the 17th century governor of Saint Christopher (Saint Kitts). It is a non-nodulating legume.

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