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Picture taken in Puerto Rico of a flamboyant tree
When we were in Puerto Rico a very beautiful tree with gorgeous red flowers caught my attention. I didn’t know the name so I decided to investigate about it. How big was my surprise when I learned that this tree is native to Africa, specifically to Madagascar but it seems to be common in all the continent, including Ethiopia. It can also be found in many other tropical climates.
Its scientific name is Delonix Regia, but it’s commonly known as flamboyant tree, flame tree, royal Poinciana, and in Central America as Malinche, among other names.
Curiously in Ethiopia is known by the name ዲሬ ዳዋ ዛፍ Dire Dawa zaf, that can be simply translated as “Tree of Dire Dawa”.
Flamboyant trees in the streets of Dire Dawa Apparently the city of Dire Dawa, specially the streets of the neighborhood they called “train town”, is lined with jacarandas and flamboyant trees that flower during spring and summer.
It’s a fast growing tree with shallow roots that reaches about 15m of height. It is used mostly as an ornamental tree, and also for shade and as bee forage. The name Flamboyant tree flowerDelonix, is derived from a Greek delos (visible), and onyx (claw), in allusion to the clawed petals. The name regia, is from the Latin word regis (royal, regal, magnificent).
Most of its common names are derived from its large, flame-red flowers.
If you got a chance to go to Ethiopia or some place in the Tropics take your time to admire this beautiful tree; you will see the flashing red flowers from far away. There is also a less common variety with yellow flowers.