AZ Arboretums

Caesalpinia mexicana

Mexican bird of paridise

Common: Mexican Bird of Paradise
Family: Fabaceae
Range/Origin: Mexico
Light: Best in full sun; partial shake okay
Soil: Tolerant
Water: Low; supplement with one watering per week during flowering period onlys

Rounded shrub or multi-stemmed tree. Evergreen. Grows to 10-15ft, spread usual 1/2 to 1/3 height. Leaves are alternate, bipinnate. Round leaflets. Flowers are spikes of solid yellow clusters on branch terminals; flowers up to 6in long; bloom early spring through summer. Has flat tan or yellow pod, 2-3in long ; splits to release hard small lima bean-shaped seed; seeds are poisonous.

Valuable as small patio tree, background shrub. Attracts hummingbirds.

Moderate to high maintenance; pod cleanup, pruning of cold damage, training to form if desired.