SelecTree: Tree Detail

SHAVING BRUSH TREE
Pseudobombax ellipticum

Pseudobombax ellipticum Pseudobombax ellipticum Pseudobombax ellipticum Pseudobombax ellipticum Pseudobombax ellipticum Pseudobombax ellipticum Pseudobombax ellipticum Pseudobombax ellipticum Pseudobombax ellipticum Pseudobombax ellipticum Pseudobombax ellipticum Pseudobombax ellipticum Pseudobombax ellipticum Pseudobombax ellipticum Pseudobombax ellipticum

Photo Locations: University of Miami - Miami, FL, Fairchild Tropical Botanical Garden - Miami, FL, Foster Botanical Garden - Honolulu, HI, Waimea Valley Oahu and Maui, HI

General Notes

This species has a swollen grayish-green trunk and palmately compound leaves. In the spring, they become deciduous before going into flower. The large flowers can be rose-pink or white with colored stamen and thin petals that recurve as the flowers open. Flowers fall and carpet the ground while the tree continues to bloom for weeks. Both pinkish-red and white flower forms are grown in Hawai'i and California. The cotton-like fibers surrounding the seeds are used for stuffing cushions and pillows. Pseudobombax ellipticum has a HPWRA (Hawai'i Pacific Weed Risk Assessment) score of -2 (Low Risk).

Native to Southern Mexico to Central America and Cuba.

Family: Malvaceae

Additional Common Names

SHAVING BRUSH TREE, BOMBAX

Tree Characteristics

Erect with a High Canopy.

Rounded Shape.

Has Deciduous foliage.

Height: 30 - 50 feet.

Width: 20 - 40 feet.

Growth Rate: 24 Inches per Year.

Longevity 50 to 150 years.

Leaves Palmately Compound, Bronze or Purple or Reddish, No Change, Deciduous.

Flowers Showy. Red. Flowers in Spring. Has perfect flowers (male and female parts in each flower).

Few, Greenish Capsule, Very Large (Over 3.00 inches), fruiting in Summer Edible.

Bark Gray, Rough or Smooth.

Shading Capacity Rated as Dense in Leaf.

Shading Capacity Rated as Low out of Leaf.

Litter Issue is Flowers, Dry Fruit and Leaves.

Tree Site Conditions & Constraints

Sunset Zones H1, H2.

USDA Hardiness Zones 10 - 11.

Exposure Full Sun.

Moist to Dry Soil.

Clay, Loam or Sand Texture.

Slightly Acidic to Slightly Alkaline Soil pH.

Salinity Tolerance is Coastal Good.

Seaside Tolerance is Good.

Health, Safety & Environmental Concerns

Attracts Birds.

Special Uses & Values

Seaside, Xerophytic, Specimen.

Cite this tree:
SelecTree. "Pseudobombax ellipticum Tree Record." 1995-2020. Aug 14, 2020.
< https://selectree.calpoly.edu/tree-detail/pseudobombax-ellipticum >

This tree is not part of the SelecTree Nursery Connection. If you would like to see this tree listed, or know of a nursery that sells it, please contact us at ufei@calpoly.edu.