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February 17th, 2021

Powderpuffs in Paradise

by R.S. Walsh

The Powderpuff tree (Calliandra haematocephala) is a small ornamental tree blooming with a variety of colors ranging from red, pink to white with striking brilliant powder puffs. The flowers appear on and off all year but tend to bloom more in the summer months. The hardy branches create an interesting crown of the tree. Forming almost a bonsai look, it branches wide 10-15’ and stays fairly low at 10-15’ tall. The leaflets are small and whimsical helping provide great character and interest to the tree as a whole.

Great places to put a powderpuff are in your butterfly garden attracting honeybees, butterflies and even hummingbirds. Placing them in an open lawn area to sprawl out and really bring some color and interest into a space is another great option. Even placing them along your front entry will provide any guest with the wow factor of a great specimen ornamental tree.

Prune the powderpuff back in spring and give it a light trimming anytime throughout the year to maintain the tree’s shape. Powderpuff trees are unique and love the heat and humidity which make them the perfect ornamental tree for your yard to allow it to grow in all its glory!

This plant column is a joint effort by all at In The Garden, a Sanibel garden center located at 3889 Sanibel Captiva Rd., Sanibel, Florida.

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