Alphabetical Plant Listing

Erythrina crista-galli (Common Coral Tree)

Christ's Tears, Cockspur Coral Tree, Common Coral Tree, Cry-Baby Plant, Cry-Baby Tree


Award-winning Erythrina crista-galli (Common Coral Tree) is a small, deciduous, corky-barked tree with attractive foliage and showy flowers. Its spiny branches are covered with leathery, dark green leaves, 6 in. long (15 cm), composed of 3 triangular leaflets. They remain fresh-looking throughout the growing season. Magnificent, coral-red, velvety, pea-like flowers borne in drooping clusters, up to 2 ft. long (60 cm), bloom after the leaves unfurl in mid-spring. Up to two additional waves of bloom may occur in summer to early fall depending on the environment. The blossoms give way to seed pods, 3-8 in. long (7-20 cm) which ripen to brown. Long-lived, Common Coral Tree is an excellent ornamental flowering tree, shade tree or street tree where winter hardy.

  • Recipient of the prestigious Award of Garden Merit of the Royal Horticultural Society
  • Grows up to 15-20 ft. tall (4-6 m) and 10-15 ft. wide (3-5 m).
  • Easily grown in sandy, moist, well-drained soils in full sun. Protect with thick mulch in winter.
  • Great as a specimen plant in Mediterranean gardens, cottage gardens and containers.
  • Virtually disease free and pest free. Keep an eye out for twig borers, thrips and nematodes.
  • Best to prune this tree at least annually to remove the past year's spent flower spikes, to encourage repeat flowering and maintain size.
  • Propagate by seed, softwood or semi-hardwood cuttings.
  • Native to Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay and Argentina.

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Requirements

Hardiness 9 – 11
Heat Zones 8 – 11
Climate Zones 7, 9, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, H1, H2
Plant Type Trees
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 15' – 20' (4.5m – 6m)
Spread 10' – 15' (3m – 4.5m)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Plant of Merit, Showy
Garden Uses Patio and Containers, Wall-Side Borders
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage, Mediterranean Garden

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By Igor Grochev, Shutterstock

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 9 – 11
Heat Zones 8 – 11
Climate Zones 7, 9, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, H1, H2
Plant Type Trees
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 15' – 20' (4.5m – 6m)
Spread 10' – 15' (3m – 4.5m)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Plant of Merit, Showy
Garden Uses Patio and Containers, Wall-Side Borders
Garden Styles Informal and Cottage, Mediterranean Garden

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