Erythrina crista-galli Coral Tree

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Erythrina crista-galli (Fireman's cap, Cockspsur, Coral Tree) is Hardy to low 20s or below and trees with large woody trunks have recovered from a 14-degree freeze in the coastal bend area. They like lots of light and water especially in the warmer, summer, growing seasons. They are deciduous by nature, although here in South Texas, they can remain evergreen if temperatures are mild and soil is kept moist, they also can flower all year round, if the right conditions are met. Coral trees can grow to 30 feet, but if frozen back will more likely become a large shrub. Inflorescences can vary from pink, orange to red and bloom in cycles of about every six weeks. In colder/cooler climates and where the ground freezes, one might want to plant them in large containers or pots, while keeping plant pruned to form a nice looking shape, but beware of thorns! If you decide to plant them out, find a southern, well sheltered area with full sun and mulch heavy in the winter.
April 10, 2000


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