Tabebuia bahamensis: Five Finger

Tabebuia bahamensis is a shrub to medium size tree u to 10 meters. Large trees develop furrowing in the bark.   Leaves arranged oppositely and are palmately compound with 3 or 5 leaflets.  Leaflet margin is entire.


Flowers zygomorphic with 2 lips, calyx campanulate covered with brown hairs.  Corolla white to pink to dark pink, large to 6 centimeters.  There are 4 stamens and the fruit is a capsule to 12 cm long and the seeds are winged.  The flowers are arranged in panicles

Tabebuia bahamensis occurs in Dry Broadleaf Evergreen Formations [Coppice] on both a limestone or sand substrate with good drainage. It is a common species throughout the islands.  It also occurs in the pine woodlands as an understory shrub.        

Tabebuia bahamensis occurs throughout the Bahamas as well as in Cuba and south Florida. Tabebuia bahamensis has been used on all islands for a number of bush medicine remedies including strengthening [aches and pains] and aphrodisiac teas, gastrointestinal issues, circulatory problems and respiratory troubles.  It is also used in the horticultural trade.

Photo: Gardens by the BaySingapore [20140305]



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