Jamaican Dogwood aka Florida Fishpoison Tree

(Piscidia piscipula)

Beautiful clusters of flowers bloom in the spring/summer. A chemical in the bark, roots, and leaves called Rotenone has a stunning effect on fish. By pulverizing the bark, roots and leaves then lowering the weighted mixture in the water, fishermen could catch fish. They had to work fast because the fish would revive quickly and swim away. This method is now prohibited by law. Jamaican Dogwood was used as a traditional remedy for treating nerve pain, migraine, and toothaches. Its strong, decay-resistant timber was often used as the central axis, or dog, of ships to ensure the vessels durability and longevity.

Information Provided by the Friends of Barefoot Beach Preserve
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