Cyrilla racemiflora L.
Swamp titi, Titi, Leatherwood, Swamp cyrilla, Palo colorado
Cyrillaceae (Titi Family)
from southeastern North America south through Central America and the West Indies to northeastern South America, this deciduous tree
stays under 30 ft., and, though it looks shrubby for several years, eventually makes a slender tree
with smooth, cinnamon-colored trunks; abundant, showy, whorled
clusters of airy, white blooms; and dark-green leaves. In the northern part of its range, the leaves turn rust-red in fall, dropping in spring just as the new leaves unfurl. Farther south, plants are nearly evergreen. Summer fruits are yellow-brown.
In the upper mountain forests of Puerto Rico, Leatherwood is a large dominant tree
known as palo colorado (red tree) because of its reddish-brown bark
and wood. Bees produce a dark honey from the flowers.
Image Gallery: 13 photo(s) available
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Tree Flower:
Flowers 4 inches Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: White
Bloom Time: May , Jun , Jul
AL , DE , FL , GA , LA , MS , NC , SC , TX , VA Native Distribution:
Coastal plain from s.e. VA to FL and TX, south through the West Indies, Mexico, and Central America to northeastern South America. Native Habitat:
Low, wet pinelands; stream banks USDA Native Status: L48(N), PR(N)
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Wet
Soil pH: Circumneutral (pH 6.8-7.2)
Soil Description: Moist, well-drained soils with high organic matter. Acid-based, Sandy, Sandy Loam, Medium Loam
Conditions Comments: Leatherwood does not tolerate competition from other trees or shrubs. It has no serious disease or insect problems.
BenefitUse Ornamental: Aromatic, Showy, Blooms ornamental, Bog or pond area, Fall conspicuous, Water garden
Use Wildlife: Nectar-bees, Fruit-birds, Fruit-mammals
Conspicuous Flowers: yes