Haematoxylum brasiletto

Accession Count: 4
Common Name: Brazilwood
Family Name: Fabaceae
Botanical Name: Haematoxylum brasiletto
Synonyms:
Botanical Synonyms: Haematoxylun boreale
Family Synonyms: Leguminosae
Sub Species:
Variety:
Forma:
Cultivar:
Characteristics: The Brazilwood has attractive heart-shaped leaves and spiny zig-zag twigs. They have fantastic ridged and fluted trunks that are very distinctive. They are winter evergreen shrubs or trees. The flowers are a beautiful yellow color, and very attractive to look at. They can bloom virtually all year long in ideal conditions.
Compound: Hae bra
Geographic Origin: West coast of Mexico, Colombia, and Venezuela
Ecozone Origin: Neotropic
Biome Origin: SA
Natural History: H. brasiletto, also known as Brazilwood, was first documented in Mexico in the 1900's.  This tropical hardwood is distributed throughout Belize, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Columbia.  Brazilwood can survive in various habitats from tropical forests to desert scrub (1,4).  In less ideal conditions it remains as a shrub-like plant and develops into a tree form with enough warm weather and water (4).
Cultivation Notes: Brazilwood is generally propagated by seed and has an average growth rate.  It successfully grows in enriched, mildly acidic to mildly alkaline soil.  The soil should be allowed to dry for extended periods, but remain consistently moist during the growing season.  This tree grows best in hot, high sun conditions (2).  The H. brasiletto is a nitrogen-fixing member of the legume family and can grow in areas with low nitrogen soil with little or no fertilizer (3). The brazilwood can flower virtually all year with warm and moist conditions. It has a large, beautiful, impressive flower display that blooms profusely after a rainstorm. Due to the semi-hardy texture, they tend to be frost sensitive during the colder months.
Ethnobotany: Brazilwood is utilized for its lumber as well as its medicinal properties.  Logwood tea is known as an effective treatment for tuberculosis.  Because of its antibiotic properties, this tree has been used to treat fevers, inflammation, stomach pains, and other ailments.  Mexican natives also used the heartwood of this tree to make instruments (4).  And to this day, a red dye made from Brazilwood is exported form several South American countries (4). This species is perfect for patios, as a specimen, or even as a background or border. In a protected courtyard they would be fantastic because of their spines. Planting this species away from highly populated areas is important because of their sharp spines.

Height: 11 - 15 feet
Width: 11 - 15 feet
Growth Rate: Moderate Growing
Grow Season: Summer
Flower Season:
Color: Yellow
Function: Shade
Spread: Non-spreading
Allergen: Non-allergenic
Invasive: Benign
Toxicity: Benign
Hardy: Semi-hardy
Water Use: Moderate Water Use

Citations:

1.Encyclopedia of Life. Web. Retrieved on 8 December 2013.

2.Haematoxylum brasiletto. Web. Retrieved on 8 December 2013.

3.Tropical Species Database. Web. Retrieved on 7 December 2013.

4.iNaturalist. Web. Retrieved on 9 December 2013.

5. Jones, Warren D, and Charles M Sacamano. Landscape Plants for Dry Regions: More Than 600  Species from around the World. Fisher Books, 2000.

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Haematoxylum brasiletto