Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Come on to the Fire

Summer in the Philippines is not complete without these blooms, and that is March to May.  Many portions of the highways are lined with this tree and the travellers are surely delighted by its warm colors. Some highways even have them on both sides that the older canopies touch above the motorists.  Passing inside these tunnel-shaped canopies you will feel very much welcome, as if you are already experiencing the hospitality of the Filipinos, which we are known for.

The term fire tree connotes a lot of meanings, which really fits it when in bloom. It is also called caballero in local dialect, which also have other meanings like gallantry, hospitality, openness, true friend.  The older common name in English in other parts of the world is Royal Poinciana, but we will understand each other better by its binomial name, Delonix regia. It is a tree legume in the Fabaceae family. Some of its common names in other countries languanges are HERE. It has many uses, one of which is nectar source for bees. Other economic uses are listed also in the above link.

Above shows the big pods which contain the seeds. The pods and the leaves are typical of legumes.

At the back of the Biotechnology Center in University of the Philippines Los Baños

a young tree near the entrance of the International Rice Research Institute

IRRI is at the foot of Mt Makiling and the Mt Banahaw is nearby.

Post Script: I would also like to link this to Helen's My Rustic Bajan Garden in Barbados, who posted the same Fire Tree later today. That only strengthened the fact that this is a real Summer Tree. It also lined the streets in their area.

This is my entry to Noel's Hot, Loud and Proud

This is also my entry to Todays Flowers


  1. Hi Andrea I recognised this tree as soon as I saw it as I admired it on someone elses blog this week but there were no close up photos on their blog. Its blooms are so lovely and so vibrant.

  2. Hi Andrea
    Such a grogeous tree! I can see why they call it fire tree. Thank you for sharing it with us. xx

  3. This is definitely hot, loud and proud! It looks like my fave 'Flame of The Forest' tree.

  4. Hey Andrea we have been mirroring each other. I have posted the same tree for this post.

  5. What a gorgeous tree! We have nothing quite like this in the U.S. Midwest. I can see why it earned the name "fire tree."

  6. Those flowers are stunning against the blue of the sky. I looked in amazement at each picture,this is so gorgeous.Thanks for sharing these beauties.

  7. These are popping up all over blogs this week, as well as all over our Florida landscapes. I need to take a walk down the street to see the few that grace our small town. Royal Poincianas are one of my favorite all-time trees and a great choice for the Hot, Loud, and Proud meme!

  8. Andrea: We also have lots of Royal Poincianas in our neighbourhood. I just can not help commenting "how beautiful that tree is!" everytime we drive by one. My kids might have been tired of hearing me saying that! Very good choice for the meme!

    Thanks for the encouraging words you left on my recent post! Appreciate it very much. I am cheering up and moving on with great spirit you all instilled into me :)

  9. Our highways and many public places have the dwarf versions. In fact, I would love to have one in my garden. The blooms are really attractive. I have not seen one that's without flower so far. They are always in bloom! Beautiful tree :-D

  10. Andrea.....this is such a beautiful tree....the colour is amazing.
    I just could not imagine having this in my part of the world......
    tku for sharing.

  11. Whoa! Andrea We call these trees GULMOHAR here in India and its my all time Fav. They are in bloom this time of the Year adding a dash of Colour to the other wise blazing n blanched Indian summer. Lovely Pictures n great entry!

  12. Gasp! Breathtakingly beautiful. Love these!!!

  13. Beautiful and fiery blossoms. A story goes that when a whole lot of these trees were in bloom, the evening sun shone on them in such a way that the king thought the forest was on fire. Hence its name 'Flame of the Forest'. It is also called Mayflower here, though it blooms fully only in June. Gul mohur is the local name.

  14. Yea, Royal Poincianna! These trees flame South Florida in June, masses of red blooms against the sky above parks and homes. Splendid. I think it's the state tree of the Bahamas as well.

    About your Asclepius asperula questions at Hill Country Mysteries, the umbel (thank you for that, I didn't know the word until you put it in your comment)is 3 - 4 inches across. The leaves grow parallel to the ground, just an inch or two above the soil. The umbel stalk rises about 4 inches above the ground. The plant seems to grow best with benign neglect in disturbed areas.

  15. Wow, they are really gorgeous!

  16. Really hot, loud and proud! And I love the foliage and seedpods as well.

  17. What a coincidence! These blooms have just been posted on my blog too :)
    I love the Gulmohur! That is what we call this tree in India. And they're in full bloom here too.It's so beautiful driving down the roads of Mumbai now. It looks like the roads and sky have been painted scarlet.

  18. Rosie
    Autumn Belle

    Thank you so much for your nice comments and appreciation.

    Helen or islandgal

    we have the same climate so we posted the same in a week, which means our surroundings are flaming red this time! Thank you for the visit.


    Even if you don't have this in your areas you can just visit our blogs, anyway we captured its charm as much as we can, thank you.

  19. Floridagirl
    Ever Green Tree

    Florida, Malaysia, India and Philippines share almost same conditions so the Fire Tree thrives well in our countries. I am sure you can relate fully with me the feelings in seeing this tree flowers everyday. Thank you for your nice words.

    Garden Girl

    Thank you also for your time visiting my corner here.

    Kathleen - Thank you also for answering my question about that beautiful flower you posted which is just a weed, but really beautiful.

  20. As soon as you said 'fire tree' i knew what it was! FlowerLady in Florida has posted many a picture of the royal poinciena (sp). It sure is pretty!

  21. I so admire these trees - I first saw them vacationing in Florida as a young girl and thought they were wonderfully exotic. Also have seen them in Guatemala where they get quite large - really impressive when in bloom. Thanks for sharing these wonderful images!

  22. Wow, I learned a lot about Fire Tree from your post. This is very informative. Love the pictures.

    We also have lots of blooming Fire Trees around us here.

    Thanks for dropping by and for leaving a kind note on my blog. You're right. I'm not Thai :-)


  23. We call the tree as Flame of the Forest or in malay language Semarak Api. Api is fire by the way.... ~bangchik

  24. i think that the name is very appropriate, since the color of the bloom is fire-red! very pretty!

  25. hi nids...i like the bright colors. it's everywhere here too. i take some snaps too. it's d season. keep posting

  26. Tina - i am looking for Flower Lady in Florida but can't find her site. It's okay thank you for the visit and kind words.

    TexasDeb - i am glad i titillate you in reminiscing your childhood memories. Yes Guatemala has same conditions with us.

    Ruth - thanks for your visit. I think i know what your nationality is, may you have a happy life in your new country.

    Bangchik - yes i think Autumn Belle has already posted this also earlier, she told me though i miss it. We also have the word 'api' but the meaning is more negative, as in "maligned, maltreated, someone who received lots of cruelty". thank you, we have lots of common words!

    Tatyana - thank you for the visit and kind comments. Malaysia's "Flame of the Forest" is fitting as well.

  27. A great post and I also wanted to thank you for sharing with Today's Flowers. Really enjoyed my visit here, thank you.

  28. Oooohhh...very beautiful..we don't have these in TN, however they do remind me a bit of our Mimosa trees..though the Mimosa flowers are not as vibrant. Very pretty, and tropical..I can just imagine driving through a tunnel of them.

  29. It is wonderful to see your part of the world. The fire tree is very well named. Thank you for visiting my blog!

  30. Denise

    Thank you very much for your kind words. Rhonda, it really is awesome driving in a tunnel of them!


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