Chorisia speciosa the ‘Silk Floss Tree’
Chorisia speciosa (syn Ceiba speciosa) is also known as the ‘Silk Floss Tree’, masses is pink flowers cover the tree in spring. The stem of the tree is covered in thorns, yes they are prickly but strangely fascinating. Also known as the Brazilian Kopock the tree is rare in cultivation.
The tree is regarded as evergreen to semi deciduous, it will lose more foliage in cooler climates than in warmer areas.
The flowers appear in spring and tend to rise above the green foliage. Another feature is the green thorny trunk, that swells to hold moisture as a natural drought tolerant mechanism. The flowers themselves are rich in nectar, very attractive to nectar loving birds and butterflies.
The silk floss name comes from the seed pods that are filled with a silky flossy material. The pods open and the tree is covered with hanging balls of ‘silk floss’. An excellent specimen can be found on the Golf Course at Bellingen in New South Wales.
Be aware that however attractive the tree is, it will drop seed pods and litter, best not planted where this will be a problem.
This is a deciduous tree that will reach around 10m in height. A well drained soil and a sunny position are essential.
- Height – Will reach around 5 – 7 metres in height. However in ideal conditions it ca reach 15 to 20 metres.
- Spread – wWill form a rounded crown or around 4 metres.
- Growth rate – Medium to fast. Fast over the first few years ans then slowing to moderate.
- Position – Full sun to a little shade.
- Soil – Humus rich moist and well drained.
- Foliage – Mid Green rounded palmate leves..
- Flowers – Lipstick pink with white markings in the centre.
- Flowering period – Spring.
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