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Products > Erythrina abyssinica
Erythrina abyssinica - Abyssinian Coral Tree

[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Tree
Family: Fabaceae = Pea Family
Origin: Africa, East (Africa)
Flower Color: Red
Bloomtime: Winter/Summer
Height: 20-30 feet
Exposure: Full Sun
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 30-32 F
May be Poisonous  (More Info): Yes
Erythrina abyssinica (Abyssinian Coral Tree) A deciduous coral tree that has upright to spreading growth to about 30 feet with mature branches and trunk having beautiful light brown corky bark. Younger stems typically have a few thorns as do the 3 bright green broadly-ovate leaflets that are clothed in a gray wooly felt. The flowers which can appear in late winter while the plant is bare or as late as early summer are bright red with banners and other petals about the same length and wavy stamens topping the cone-like inflorescence. Plant in full sun. Drought tolerant but can definitely benefit from deep summer watering. Hardy to around 30 F. This species is widespread in Africa, extending in the north from the Sudan and Ethiopia south to Zimbabwe where it can be found as a characteristic tree in the mid elevation woodland and grasslands between 3,000 and 7,500 feet. It is relatively rare in cultivation in California however, as noted by Elizabeth McClintock when she wrote her article "Erythrina Cultivated in California for the Erythrina Symposium IV (Alertonia 1982, Pacific Tropical Botanic Garden). At that time McClintock noted that only 2 individuals were known to be in existence in California, one in Franceschi Park in Santa Barbara that was planted in 1960 and another in a private garden in Culver City. Our plants are from cuttings originally taken from the tree growing at Franceschi Park.  The information on this page is based on our research that has been conducted on this plant in our nursery library, from online sources, and from observations made of the crops growing in the nursery, plants in the nursery's garden and those in other gardens where we have observed it. We also have incorporated comments received from others and welcome getting feedback from those who may have additional information, particularly if this information includes cultural information that would aid others in growing Erythrina abyssinica.