The Tropical Flowering Tree Society (TFTS) is an organization in Coral Gables of approximately 100 volunteers who work hard to plant and propagate special flowering trees.
All trees blossom and let fall some nut or flower, however, these are particularly “showy” as Stephen Pearson, one of the society’s board members, said.
“We are fortunate to have trees with showy flowers in bloom 12 months a year,” he said.
The trees that he is talking about are poincianas, golden shower, queen’s crepe myrtle, jacaranda, copper pod, frangipani, ampng others. When the Society first formed there were only a handful of species, now there are hundreds throughout the City Beautiful.
These trees are easy to spot because of their dramatic colors. They are orange, red and even yellow on top. The trees can grow upward of 40 feet with overhead canopies of up to 60 feet in diameter.
The group of aficionados met on Saturday and Sunday, June 8 and 9, to take a trolley tour and view the colorful treetops. On Saturday, they filled two buses, and they filled one on Sunday. The event was a joint project of the Society, the City of Coral Gables and The Palace.
The Society, which formed in 1988 as a non-profit organization, corresponds with similar groups in Thailand, India, Australia, Brazil and other countries.
The group is committed to the flowering trees and to the flowering trees’ importance to the environment. Most of these trees are drought tolerant, hurricane resistant and beneficial for the native fauna, or animals, Pearson noted.
There are some that are pest plants like “orchid trees,” he also said.
The Society also has an interest in youth. During its annual Fiesta in June, the Society awards scholarships to three female high school seniors who “have demonstrated academic achievement, moral character, and an interest in making the world a better place.”
The Society also celebrated with some of Coral Gables residents with the Royal Poinciana Garden Tea on Sunday, June 9.
For more information about the Tropical Flowering Tree Society, visit the website at TFTS.org.