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Spathodea campanulata


Spathodea campanulata P. Beauv.

Family Name: Bignoniaceae
Synonyms: Spathodea nilotica
Common Name: African Tulip Tree, Panchot, Flame of the Forest, Fountain Tree, Fire Tree, Fire Bell, Nandi Flame, Gabon Tulip Tree, Syringe Tree, Pancut-Pancut


Family Name
Genus Epithet
Species Epithet
Name Authority
Name Status (botanical)
Common Names

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Division Angiosperms (Flowering Seed Plants) (Dicotyledon)
Plant Growth Form Tree (Medium (16m-30m))
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic
Plant Shape Oval
Maximum Height 15 m to 25 m
Maximum Plant Spread / Crown Width 10 m to 15 m


Native Distribution Tropical Africa
Native Habitat Terrestrial (Secondary Rainforest, Disturbed Area / Open Ground)
Preferred Climate Zone Tropical

Description and Ethnobotany

Ethnobotanical Uses Food (Herb or Spice)
Others: Medicinal: Bark and leaves have anti-bacterial properties, used in traditional medicine in Ghana to treat wounds and burns. Leaves reported to have anti-malarial action. Stem-bark decoctions exhibit blood sugar lowering action in mice. Timber: Soft white wood used to make paper, drums and blacksmith's bellows. Products: Seeds boiled to extract poison that is applied to arrowheads. Children use flowers as water pistols, and opened seedpods as toy boats. Culture: Tree believed in some parts of Africa to possess magical propeties. Twigs used as wands by witch doctors. Flowers placed on people's doors to symbolize evil.

Landscaping Features

Desirable Plant Features Ornamental Flowers
Landscape Uses General
Thematic Landscaping Naturalistic Garden
Usage Hazard - Cons Invasive / Potentially Invasive, Weak Branches

Fauna, Pollination and Dispersal

Fauna Pollination Dispersal Associated Fauna Bird-Attracting
Pollination Method(s) Biotic (Fauna) (Vertebrates (Bird), Vertebrates (Bat))
Seed or Spore Dispersal Abiotic (Explosive Dehiscence)

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Full Sun
Water Preference Moderate Water
Plant Growth Rate Fast
Rootzone Tolerance Fertile Loamy Soils, Well-Drained Soils
Maintenance Requirements Moderate
Propagation Method Seed, Stem Cutting, Root Cutting


Foliage Retention Evergreen
Mature Foliage Colour(s) Green
Mature Foliage Texture(s) Raised / Sunken Veins
Foliar Type Compound (Odd-Pinnate)
Foliar Arrangement Along Stem Opposite
Foliar Shape(s) Non-Palm Foliage (Oval, Oblong)
Foliar Venation Pinnate / Net
Foliar Margin Entire
Leaf Area Index (LAI) for Green Plot Ratio 3.0 (Tree - Intermediate Canopy)

Non - Foliar and Storage

Trunk Type (Non Palm) Woody
Bark Colour(s) Light Grey
Stem Type & Modification Woody
Root Type Underground (Tap Root, Fibrous Root)
Mature Bark Texture Remarks Warty

Floral (Angiosperm)

Flower & Plant Sexuality Bisexual Flowers
Flower Colour(s) Orange, Red
Inflorescence Type Raceme
Flower Lifespan on Plant [Remarks] ( )
Flower Lifespan on Plant - Remarks 3 days
Flowering Habit Polycarpic

Fruit, Seed and Spore

Mature Fruit Colour(s) Brown
Fruit Classification Simple Fruit
Fruit Type Dehiscent Dry Fruit , Capsule

Image Repository



Master ID 1839
Species ID 3132
Flora Disclaimer The information in this website has been compiled from reliable sources, such as reference works on medicinal plants. It is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment and NParks does not purport to provide any medical advice. Readers should always consult his/her physician before using or consuming a plant for medicinal purposes.
Species record last updated on: 14 October 2021.