A Silk Floss Tree: The Pod

Oct 19, 2014
By Jutta234, Wikimedia Commons, CC-BY-SA-3.0

By Jutta234, Wikimedia Commons, CC-BY-SA-3.0

“The pod, by the way, was ‘low hanging fruit’ from a silk floss tree in the parking lot of the Hastings Ranch Ralph’s in Pasadena,” says Susan Strother Carrier who has kindly shared her pictures and the evolution of the pod.

The silk floss tree or Chorisia speciosa has one of the “most unique trunks in nature,” says the South Florida Plant Guide. “The trunk develops thorns like spiky medieval weaponry.” The trunk also become a bit bulbous in shape as it matures. In autumn, the tree will bloom and be covered with pink flowers. The silky “floss” embedded inside the pods was once used to stuff pillows. This specimen is “fairly” drought-tolerant, needing regular watering in the first year, but then can handle drying out between watering.

The following photos were taken by Susan Strother Carrier…

Ten days after picking up the pod:



Day 18: “The floss started to puff out like a cotton ball.”

Silk floss tree pod inside


Oct. 17th: “The pod from the silk floss tree has burst open. I’d better get this puppy outside.”

Silk floss pod open


Susan Strother Carrier spent eleven years as a sales and marketing executive for a Fortune 50 company and a decade as a freelance writer and editor. In 2008, she turned over her own new leaf by starting a marketing consulting company A New Leaf Communications. Her blog may be found at Open Mouth Insert Foot.

Photo by Skye Moorhead

Susan Strother Carrier; photo by Skye Moorhead



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