Meet the Natives: Jamaica Dogwood

02 Jun 2021

 
 
 
Jamaica dogwood (Piscidia piscipula) is a fast-growing shade tree that is very showy this time of year. Its white-to-pink flowers, while small individually, create clusters that provide a striking splash of color. 
 
The Jamaica dogwood’s flowers are followed by papery, brown seed pods that are winged, lending an interesting look. This tree is deciduous: Prior to blooming, it tends to drop most of its leaves.
 
Jamaica dogwood is also known as the fish poison or fish fuddle tree because it has been used to stun fish. Though it is illegal today, an extract from the leaves and bark were placed in the water, slowing down the fishing target and making them easier to catch. 
 
This tree is also a larval host plant for the hammock skipper butterfly (Polygonus leo) and the flowers serve as a great nectar source for bees. This hearty, salt-tolerant tree is versatile in the landscape, growing in dry to periodically inundated soil, in full sun or partial shade.
 
SCCF's Native Landscapes & Garden Center at the Bailey Homestead is open Monday through Thursday, 10am to 3pm. We will also continue to offer contactless deliveries and curbside pickup. Simply place your order online by midnight on Tuesday for pickup or delivery that Wednesday.
 
Please email our Garden Center Assistant Sue Ramos at sramos@sccf.org with any questions or requests.
 
SCCF members will get their discount by entering this promo code: SCCFMBR10