Capturing the essence of the phrase “pretty in pink,” the Silk Floss Tree easily stands out with its full leafy appearance and its gorgeous delicate flowers. The branches of this tree grow horizontally. The leaves each have about five to seven long leaflets. The real beauty, though, is the tree’s flowers. Each flower is pale and white in the center and then pink on the tips of each petal. The sweet nectar of the flowers is known to draw in monarch butterflies, adding to the loveliness of the tree. The best time to look out for this tree is between February and May, when the flowers are in bloom. The Silk Floss Tree also bears a unique fruit that is actually responsible for its name. The large fruits are brown and white oval-shaped pods that have black seeds inside. What really makes them special is the fluffy exterior, which resembles silk or cotton. While the silky fruit has been used to make stuffing, paper and ropes, the Silk Floss Tree is mostly grown for the aesthetic appeal. These trees are native to South America, specifically Brazil and Argentina, but can be spotted here at Zoo Miami by the West bridge inside the Aviary. Be careful near these pretty trees, their branches and trunk are known to have sharp thorns and prickles.
Gorillas will be off display until July 2017. We apologize for the inconvenience.