Toxic Parts:
isoquinoline alkaloids, erythraline
Flower Color:
  • flower color
waterways, swamps, wetlands

Geographical Distribution

Cockspur coral tree distribution - United States

Related Species

Cockspur Coral Tree

Erythrina crista-galli

Common Coral Tree, Brazilian Coral Tree, Cock's Comb Coral Tree, Cockscomb Coral Tree, Cockspur, Coral Tree, Cry Baby, Cry-baby Tree, Crybaby Tree, Crybabytree, Fireman's Cap, Fireman's Cap Tree
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Cockspur coral tree (Erythrina crista-galli) is a small, deciduous, corky-barked tree with attractive foliage and showy flowers. It has spiny branches covered with leathery, dark green leaves. It develops drooping clusters of coral red, velvety, pea-like flowers mid-spring, and brown elongated seed pod fruits in the summer to early fall.

Cockspur coral tree is native to South America (i.e. eastern Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Paraguay, Uruguay and northern Argentina), but has been widely cultivated as an ornamental tree worldwide.

Isoquinoline alkaloids are found in all parts of tree. The leaves contain crystadine, crystamidine, oleanolic acid, erythrinine, erysodine, and erythrosine. Symptoms of
isoquinoline alkaloid poisoning develop very quickly, and usually aren't fatal to the horse.


  • Staggering
  • Trembling
  • Diarrhea
  • Convulsions
  • Labored Breathing