Help ID tree with thorny trunk

jdeamerAugust 14, 2013

I'm helping a friend remove or relocate trees that aren't doing well or are inappropriate under his mature oak trees in Los Angeles. A bunch of strange planting choices were made. For instance, I've seen this tree used as a street tree. It looks tropical but I have no idea what it is. I only have a photo of the trunk, which I think is distinctive enough to ID it, I hope. Anyone know what it is? Thanks!

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nil13(z21 L.A., CA (Mt. Washington))

pics of leaves and flowers are helpful, but I'm going to guess Ceiba speciosa (Chorisia speciosa) a huge tree.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2013 at 6:13PM
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gyr_falcon(Sunset 23 USDA 9)

Yes it is quite distinctive. I picked the correct genis id from the thread title alone. ;) That tree can get quite large; 30-60'.
The white-flowering C. insignis is also sometimes grown, but it is much less common. Beautiful flowers on both. Some grafted plants have very few thorns on the trunk.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2013 at 7:40PM
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hosenemesis(SoCal Sunset 19 USDA 8b)

Yes, a beautiful tree. Move or kill it now. That is far too close to the house, unfortunately.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2013 at 1:30AM
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Thanks so much everyone. You've been really helpful. I will recommend moving the tree to a better location. Anyone know a good landscaper who moves trees?

    Bookmark   August 15, 2013 at 10:00AM
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hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

They are not expensive and not rare.

Best just to cut it down and plant a new one, if you want one.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2013 at 9:22PM
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bahia(SF Bay Area)

and quite fast growing and good sized even as a cheap 5 gallon size. I'd agree, a new one is probably simpler than trying to move the existing one at that size.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2013 at 9:06PM
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Is this the tree that makes the big pods that split open and soft white fluff comes out?

    Bookmark   August 21, 2013 at 1:01AM
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bahia(SF Bay Area)

yes, at least it's one of several Ceiba species that have fluffy seed pods, and likely the most commonly planted here in California.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2013 at 2:01PM
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