Friends of the Port St Lucie Botanical Gardens
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Silk Floss Tree

Ceiba speciosa

  • Family name: Malvaceae
  • Origin: South America
  • Height: 25’ -  50’
  • Canopy Span: 32’ – 50’
  • Rounded, medium to large deciduous tree, distinguished by its swollen, prickly trunk and green spiny bark, features showy pink flowers, seed pods filled with fluffy white silk, and one of the most unique tree trunks in nature
  • Prefers full sun to partial shade, rich soil, continuously moist conditions, deciduous in dry weather, resistant to drought
  • Resistant to moderate cold, USDA Hardiness Zones 9 – 13
  • Flowers are creamy-whitish in the center and pink towards the tips of their five petals, measure 4’ to 6’ in diameter, shaped superficially similar to hibiscus flowers, nectar attracts insect pollinators and  hummingbirds, generally blooms in spring
  • Completely bare of leaves and flowers during the winter months
  • Fruit is 8” long and contains bean-sized black seeds surrounded by a mass of fibrous, fluffy matter like cotton
  • Best on large properties or as a single specimen in a medium-sized yard planted well away from foot traffic and play areas because of the thorns, roots may cause damage to walkways or drives

Silk Floss Tree