Gulmohar tree, scientifically known as Delonix regia, is a popular ornamental tree in India, known for its vibrant, fiery red flowers that bloom during summer. It belongs to the family Fabaceae and is native to Madagascar, but it is widely planted in tropical and subtropical regions across the world. The Gulmohar tree, also known as the flame tree or Royal Poinciana, is not native to India. It is believed to have originated in Madagascar and was brought to India by the British during the colonial era for ornamental purposes.
|Scientific name||Delonix regia|
|Maximum height||15-20 meters|
|Diameter of crown when mature||8-12 meters|
|Diameter of the tree trunk when mature||50-60 centimeters|
|Years it takes to grow||5-7 years|
|Economic benefit to the farmers||The tree is widely used for ornamental purposes and is popular in landscaping. It can also be used in agroforestry systems to improve soil health and crop productivity. The tree provides shade and shelter to farmers, and its wood can be used for various purposes such as making furniture, handicrafts, and fuel. The flowers of the Gulmohar are used in traditional medicine for treating various ailments.|
The tree’s vibrant and showy flowers, along with its ability to grow in tropical and subtropical regions, made it a popular choice for landscaping in India. It was extensively planted along the streets, in gardens, and public spaces, and quickly became a part of the Indian landscape.
Today, the Gulmohar tree is widely distributed across India, and it has adapted well to the local climate and soil conditions. It is now considered an integral part of the Indian flora and a symbol of the country’s rich biodiversity.
Gulmohar tree can grow up to 30 meters tall, with a spread of 10-12 meters. It has a wide umbrella-shaped crown with dense foliage, which provides ample shade during hot summers. The trunk is sturdy and can grow up to 2 meters in diameter, with a smooth, greyish-brown bark. The leaves are bipinnate, 30-50 cm long, with tiny leaflets arranged in pairs. The flowers are large, showy, and in shades of bright red, orange, and yellow. The fruit is a long, flat, woody pod that contains seeds.
Gulmohar tree plays a vital role in the ecosystem. It is a nitrogen-fixing plant that enriches the soil by converting atmospheric nitrogen into a usable form. The tree provides habitat and food for a variety of birds, insects, and animals. It attracts bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds, which help in pollination. The dense foliage of the tree provides shade, which helps in reducing soil erosion and conserving moisture.
Like all plants, Gulmohar tree sequesters carbon from the atmosphere during photosynthesis, thus helping to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
Importance to birds, animals, and insects
Gulmohar tree provides a habitat for a variety of birds such as parrots, mynahs, and pigeons, which build their nests in its branches. The tree also attracts insects like bees, butterflies, and ants, which feed on its nectar and help in pollination.
Soil type and temperature range
Gulmohar tree grows best in well-drained soils with a pH range of 6.5-7.5. It prefers warm and humid climates and can tolerate temperatures ranging from 15°C to 40°C.
States in India where the tree is found
Gulmohar tree is native to Madagascar, but it is widely planted in tropical and subtropical regions across the world, including India. It is commonly found in states like Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, and Kerala.
Different stages of tree growth
The Gulmohar tree goes through different stages of growth. In the initial stage, it develops a taproot system that helps in anchoring the plant and absorbing nutrients from the soil. The second stage involves the growth of lateral roots, which helps in spreading the tree’s canopy. In the third stage, the tree develops a thick trunk and a wide canopy that provides ample shade.
Benefits to farmers
Gulmohar tree can be grown under agroforestry, which is a farming system that combines the cultivation of crops and trees. The tree’s dense foliage helps in reducing soil erosion and conserving moisture, which is beneficial for crops grown in the vicinity. The tree also improves soil fertility by fixing atmospheric nitrogen and increasing organic matter.
Gulmohar tree is a beautiful and valuable tree that has many ecological and economic benefits. Its vibrant flowers, shade, and carbon sequestration properties make it an excellent addition to the environment. By planting more of these trees, we can help in restoring the ecological balance and promoting sustainable farming practices.