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Publication Information

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Title: Bauhinia purpurea DC.ex Walp.

Author: Connor, K.F.;

Date: 2002

Source: In: Vozzo, J.A. Tropical Tree Seed Manual. Agric. Handbook 721. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. 329-331.

Publication Series: Paper (invited, offered, keynote)

Description: Bauhinia purpurea is a fast growing small to medium-sized evergreen tree, reaching 7.6 m in height and 17.8 cm in diameter. It can reach a height of 4.6 m in less than 2 years. The bark is light gray and can be either smooth or finely fissured. The species is a native of southeastern Asia from India to China and is planted in Florida, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and elsewhere in tropical America. It is primarily cultivated as an amenity tree, planted for its flowering attributes. No hybrids or geographical races have been reported. The flowers are borne on unbranched axillary or terminal corymbs in autumn and winter months; only a few flowers are borne on each corymb. The calyx opens by splitting into 2 nearly equal parts. When fully open, the large, fragrant, five-petaled flowers are 8.9 to 10.2 cm across. The petals are 5.1 cm long and 1.6 cm wide. Flower color is variable. The fruits are flat, dark, dehiscent pods ranging from 20.3 to 30.5 cm in length and from 1.9 to 2.5 cm in width. Fruits twist as they open, expelling the seed which are shiny-brown, rounded, flat, and 1.3 to 1.6 cm long.

Keywords: Bauhinia purpurea, species description, seed research, orchidtree

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Connor, K.F. 2002. Bauhinia purpurea DC. ex Walp. In: Vozzo, J.A. Tropical Tree Seed Manual. Agric. Handbook 721. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service. 329-331.


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