Piscidia piscipula

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Jamaica-dogwood, Fish-poison Tree

Fabaceae (Leguminosae)

Plant Specifics

Size:to 45 ft
Life Span:Long-lived perennial
Flower Color:Pink,lavender
Fruit Color:NA
Phenology:Deciduous. Blooms in spring before it leafs out.
Noted for:Showy flowers, Showy fruits


Recommended Uses:Shade tree. Also good for hedge rows.
Availability:Native nurseries, Seed
Light: Full Sun,  Part Shade
Moisture Tolerance:
always floodedextremely dry
 (Somewhat moist, no flooding ----- to ----- Very long very dry periods)
Moisture Tolerance: Somewhat moist, no flooding ----- to ----- Very long very dry periods
Salt Water Flooding Tolerance:Tolerant of occasional/brief inundation such as can occur in storm surges.
Salt Spray/ Salty Soil Tolerance:Moderate. Tolerant of salty wind and may get some salt spray. Exposure to salt spray would be uncommon (major storms).
Soil or other substrate:Humus (organic, upland), Lime rock, Sand
Soil pH:Calcareous (high pH)



Larval host for cassius blue (Leptotes cassius) and hammock skipper (Polygonus leo) butterflies.

Attracts bee pollinators.

Native Habitats:Dry sites. Hammocks, somewhat shady areas near the coast.

Distribution and Planting Zones

Natural Range in Florida
USDA Zones

Suitable to grow in:
10A 10B 11 9B 

USDA zones are based on minimum winter temperatures


Ethnobotany:Native Americans used an extract from the bark, roots, twigs, and leaves to sedate fish, making them easier to catch. Has been used as a medicine.