In our garden we do have this special pink-blooming tree: Pinckneya
Scientific name (Pinckneya pubens)
Common name - Fever tree; Poinsettia tree
Join me on a Garden Tour with: Mariette's Back to Basics.
Pinckneya is a small deciduous tree native to the coastal plains of the southeastern United States. It is notable for the very showy blossoms borne on the tips of the branches in late spring. Their color is usually pink, but the possible shades range from creamy-white to rose-red. The blossoms occur in large clusters, and a tree in full bloom is a spectacular sight.
Actually the petals of the individual blossoms are small and inconspicuous. The size and color of the bloom comes from the sepals, which can expand to several inches. Because these sepals retain their color for an extended period before fading, the show lasts for several weeks.
This is a plant of the deep south, and it can't be grown in the north except in a greenhouse. Even in the south It isn't common, either in gardens or in the wild. Its native habitat is wet acidic soils on the margins of bays, swamps, and streams, often in the light shade of scattered pine trees. Cultivated plants can grow on drier sites, but may need special attention during droughts. Root rot can be a problem, especially on poorly-drained clay soils.
But in the right conditions the species can grow fairly fast and begin blooming at a young age. It needs a moist acidic soil with good drainage, and does best in light shade. Wild specimens often spread by producing root suckers, and cultivated plants usually have multiple trunks.
|A Pinckneya grows rather tall, it was hard to capture its blossoms on camera...|
|Most blossoms were way up high where we could not reach them!|
The scientific name of this species has been changed from Pinckneya bracteata to Pinckneya pubens. An old common name is Fever-bark Tree, and the bitter bark of the plant was formerly used as a home remedy for reducing fever. The species is related to the Cinchona Tree (Cinchona ledgerina) of South America, the original source of quinine.
Trees in our garden are rather tall and also this Pinkneya has its blossoms all the way up in the air. But at least we got you some pictures. Pieter held a branch down for me to catch on camera.