The Jamaican Dogwood is a flowering tree in the legume family that has light pink flowers and papery, winged seed pods. It is a tropical tree that is native to southern Florida, the Caribbean and Central America. It is a small or medium sized tree with smooth, light gray bark and a rounded or irregular canopy. Host plant for several butterfly species. Good tree for coastal planting. It is drought tolerant, wind resistant and tolerant and tolerant of flooding and salt water. Hardy in zones 10-12.
Growing Instructions for the Jamaican Dogwood
The seeds have a hard seed coat that has to be treated, or scarified, in order for water to enter the seeds so that they can sprout. 1. Scarify the seeds by nicking or sanding the seed coat. The seeds can be sanded with sandpaper, a nail file or an emery board. 2. Soak the seeds in water for several hours. 3. The seeds like moist, well-drained soil. Use a sterile seed starter mix, if available. It prevents soil fungi from damaging the seeds and the seedlings. If not available, then make a mixture of half potting soil and half sand, perlite or vermiculite. Put the soil in a pot. 4. Put the seeds on the soil. 5. Cover the seeds with a thin layer of soil. 6. Water the mixture so that it is moist but not wet. 7. Place the pots in an area with warm temperatures in full sun or part shade. 8. When the seedlings are a few inches tall, they can be transplanted.