Bursera simaruba (L.) Sarg.
Gumbo limbo, Gumbo-limbo
Burseraceae (Frankincense Family)
Synonym(s): Elaphrium simaruba, Pistacia simaruba
USDA Symbol: BUSI
The most characteristic and attractive feature of this 60 ft., deciduous tree is neither the flower nor the glossy, pinnate leaves but the smooth, lustrous coppery bark of the older stems. Crown spreading, rounded; branches large, crooked; trunk stout. On large trees, the bark often hangs in thin, papery strips. The trunk is topped by massive branches which spread out at side angles and have many stout branchlets.
The Gumbo Limbo is a member of the torchwood or bursera family (family Burseraceae) of trees and shrubs, many with smooth bark and aromatic resin. There are about 500 species in tropical regions, especially America and northeastern Africa. The Gumbo Limbo is one of only three native tree species in North America.
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Bloom InformationBloom Time: Jan , Feb , Mar , Apr
Growing ConditionsLight Requirement: Sun
Soil Description: Sandy soils.
Conditions Comments: The dense, summertime foliage creates good shade.
Butterflies and Moths of North America (BAMONA)Bursera simaruba is a larval host and/or nectar source for:
Dingy Purplewing |
Learn more at BAMONA
PropagationDescription: Propagation is easy. Branches of any size take root readily when stuck in the ground. Trees grown from seed usually have a better shape, and the growth rate of seedlings is rapid.
Seed Collection: Not Available
Seed Treatment: Not Available
Commercially Avail: yes
BibliographyBibref 1186 - Field Guide to Moths of Eastern North America (2005) Covell, C.V., Jr.
Bibref 1185 - Field Guide to Western Butterflies (Peterson Field Guides) (1999) Opler, P.A. and A.B. Wright
Bibref 841 - Native Alternatives to Invasive Plants (2006) Burrell, C. C.
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Recommended Species Lists
Find native plant species by state. Each list contains commercially available species suitable for gardens and planned landscapes. Once you have selected a collection, you can browse the collection or search within it using the combination search.View Recommended Species page
Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Bursera simaruba in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Bursera simaruba in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Bursera simaruba
MetadataRecord Modified: 2007-01-01
Research By: TWC Staff