T.E.R:R.A.I.N - Taranaki Educational Resource: Research, Analysis and Information Network


Embothrium coccineum (Chilean fire bush)

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
Order: Proteales
Family: Proteaceae
Genus: Embothrium
Species: E. coccineum
Binomial name: Embothrium coccineum
Common name: Chilean fire bush or Chilean fire tree

Embothrium coccineum is also known as Chilean fire bush or Chilean fire tree. It grows in the temperate forests of Chile and Argentina. This shrub or small tree can reach up to 30 ft (10 m) and more. However, it is generally smaller when grown in gardens. This tree has an evergreen to semi-deciduous foliage and striking orange to scarlet flowers in spring, which explains the name "fire tree".
The leaves of the Chilean fire tree are elliptic or lanceolate, entire and alternate. The foliage, depending on the climate, is evergreen to semi-deciduous. In spring, the Chilean fire tree is covered with orange-red to scarlet tubular flowers that are grouped in racemes. When in full bloom, this tree really deserves the name "fire tree" or sometimes "flame tree". The bark is dark grey with light spots. Its wood is light pink colour, and besides for being very soft but durable, is used for elaborating spoons, kitchen vessels and another craft articles.

Here is an interesting comment from a person in Dunedin. 
"We have planted 2 of these plants and we have found it to be totally evasive It suckers from the root and has travelled 6 metres from the main tree and should be rated as a weed "