Bay Cedar

(Suriana maritima)

The Bay Cedar is endemic to south Florida, the Caribbean, Central America, and the Bahamas. It is commonly found growing in thickets, on sand dunes and rocky shores, often just back of the high tide line. It is now on the endangered plants list. This 5- to 20-foot-tall plant has a sturdy, branched trunk that has beautiful, dark brown, rough, flaky bark; the wood of this tree is very hard and heavy. Branches arch gracefully and hold the evergreen leaves on short, upturned twigs. The tiny, gray-green leaves are fleshy and minutely downy; the new leaves and twigs are particularly downy. Yellow, cup-shaped flowers may occur singly or in clusters that are inconspicuously set among the leaves. These small flowers occur consistently throughout the year. The seeds of the bay cedar are held in a small, brown, five-pointed calyx.

Information Provided by the Friends of Barefoot Beach Preserve
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