The Q&A Archives: Royal Poinciana /Flamboyant or Peacock Tree

Question: I have some Royal Poinciana seeds from my last trip to Puerto Rico and was wondering if I could successfully grow them (indoors) in my home in VA. What type of special lighting, space, or pot do you think would be required to do this if it is even possible?

Answer: Germinating the seeds will probably be the easier part of this project. I would nick them or lightly abrade them with sandpaper then soak overnight in warm water until they swell (change the water and soak another day if necessary) and then plant immediately. Provide a warm soil temperature (gentle bottom heat may be helpful.) Once germinated, plan on growing the plants for about ten years or so before they bloom. Keep in mind this is a fairly large tree with a vigorous spreading root system. It will have to be grown indoors during the winter so it will eventually need a very large container and high ceiling with very bright light -- a large commercial size greenhouse would be ideal. I suppose it is possible but, sadly, it would be difficult for the average home gardener.

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