What is the small tree with yellow flowers in Arizona and Texas? Caesalpinia mexicana, Mexican Bird of Paradise is a flowering plant species in the pea family, Fabaceae. This drought tolerant, perennial tree is native to Mexico and the extreme lower Rio Grande Valley in Texas.
Mexican Bird of Paradise
All parts of this Mexican plant are poisonous. The showy Mexican Bird of Paradise plants, shrubs thrive in dry conditions. Once the roots are established, they are drought tolerant. The yellow flowers attract hummingbirds!
If you are looking for a small shade tree that is flowering and easy to care for; the Mexican Bird of Paradise is the best small shade tree for your yard and a good choice for xeriscape desert gardens.
Caesalpinia mexicana, Mexican Poinciana, does best in full sun. It is a perennial flowering tree that is drought and heat resistant with rounded leaves and spikes of solid yellow flower clusters. The fragrant yellow flowers of this Bird of Paradise are very showy and will bloom throughout the year. The USDA Hardiness Zone is 9.
Caesalpinia mexicana, Mexican Bird of Paradise Plant
leaves and yellow flowers of Caesalpinia mexicana, Mexican Plants
In the photo ABOVE see the rounded shape of the leaves and the yellow flowers.of the native Mexican Bird of Paradise.
The Red Bird of Paradise, - commonly but mistakenly called The Mexican Bird of Paradise, - has Red, Orange and Yellow Flowers that are seen all over Phoenix, Tucson, Southern Arizona, California and Texas. See the Picture below.
Red Bird of Paradise Orange Red Flowers
The Mexican Bird of Paradise bush can be pruned and trained into a small tree, see photo below.
Mexican Bird of Paradise tree, well pruned
Mexican Bird of Paradise, Caesalpinia mexicana
Yesterday in my travels through Tucson, AZ, I noticed a Mexican Bird of Paradise small tree on a property that seemed abandoned. It is unfortunate that this amazing native Mexican plant is not being treasured. The good news is I noticed young bean pods that I will harvest when they ripen and dry.
PLANT AND GROW – How to grow bird of paradise plants, bushes, shrubs from Bean Pods
Germinating the seeds for this Caesalpinia mexicana, Mexican Bird of Paradise, flowering tree will be easy! I simply soak the seeds from the bean pods in water for 24 hours. Many people use a damp paper towel. If you are using the paper towel method to germinate your seeds, if a white shoot appears, plant it – white shoot facing DOWN.
To plant and grow your bird of paradise – plant the seed in peat pots, barely cover it. Cover the seeds lightly with damp vermiculite or your choice of a good soil.
Bird of Paradise seeds need at least 8 hours of sun, but not direct sun it will be too hot! You can start to give them a little more direct sun after the first leaves appear.
Peat Pots are great and make growing and transplanting your Mexican, Yellow or Red Bird of Paradise seedlings much easier. Start your seeds indoors and when you are ready to plant your Bird of Paradise just put the entire pot in the ground. Roots will penetrate the peat pot and the pot disintegrates enriching the soil.