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Tropical Trees & Arboriculture

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  About Tropical Trees & Arboriculture
The Tropical Designs of Florida website features tropical horticulture, hurricane horticulture, and tropical arboriculture. Topics from Tropical Plants and Tropical Animals to Integrated Pest Management and Composting are discussed.
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  An Experiment in Arboriculture and Mosquito Control
There are approximately 3000 species of mosquito in the world, about 200 in the United States and about 60 species are found where I work in Miami-Dade County, Florida. Many of these mosquito species are not only annoying biters of humans or animals but are also disease vectors. Mosquito abatement for public health should be part of the urban forester’s scope of practice.
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  Ceiba Speciosa
The silk floss tree, Ceiba speciosa, is a tropical tree native to Brazil and northern Argentina. In South America, where it is often used as a street tree, it is sometimes known by common names corisia morada or palo borracho. Well known for its spiny green trunk, it is a stunning tree when in bloom. From a tropical point of view, it is also a hardy tree that can tolerate drought and light frost once established. The tree appears to be fairly salt tolerant, and it grows well in coastal areas.
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  Why Trees Blow Over
It looks like we may get through another hurricane season without a bad storm. So far we have not had to deal with any blown over trees or what is known in the arboricultural industry as windthrow. Well, this is certainly not the time to be complacent. Now is the time to review and perhaps change our bad planting and horticultural habits so we have less windthrow and the resultant damage in the next storm.
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  Royal Palm Bugs
There is no one tree that sets Miami apart from any other North American city like Roystonea regia, the Royal Palm. Utilized in Miami as an ornamental tree since the beginning of the 20th centaury, boulevards that are lined with this stately palm tree become immediately, distinctive tropical vistas. No single tree can accentuate the architecture of a building better than this Caribbean palm.
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  Ficus Species & Hurricane Horticulture
Ficus trees are among the most distinctive trees in tropical and subtropical urban landscapes. These trees can reach stately proportions with immense canopies and very tropical-looking aerial roots that in time can form large trunks. The very characteristics that make Ficus great landscape trees can also make them the wrong tree to plant in the wrong place.
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  Pollination and the Natural History of the Calabash Tree
An unusual tree occasionally found growing in South Florida gardens is the Calabash tree, Crescentia cujete. This relative of the Sausage Tree occurs naturally from Mexico to Brazil including the Antilles. It can be immediately recognized by the large, round green fruit attached directly to the branches of the tree. An otherwise undistinctive tree, it is usually overlooked unless in fruit.
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  Pollinating Sausage Trees
The Sausage Tree, Kigelia africana, is a fairly inconspicuous tree when grown amongst other trees, even though it can reach a height of 40 to 50 feet.
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  Some Observations on Relocating Tropical Trees
Recently I visited a job site where large tropical specimen trees had been relocated two years ago, a year before construction began. I know the trees were properly moved by competent professionals, because I met the team and was able to observe the trees immediately after the move.
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Contact: Jeff Shimonski
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