How to Plant, Grow, and Care for Coral Bean

Develop coralbean as a fairly flowering shrub that may be pruned or formed right into a small tree. It produces beautiful pink tubular flowers, making it a wonderful addition to a local hummingbird backyard. The flowers will start to bloom in spring and proceed into the summer time and fall.

The foliage is heart-shaped and shiny darkish inexperienced. The trunk and stems are coated in small curved thorns, just like roses. It’s a incredible border plant, however produces poisonous seeds. Keep away from it in a backyard frequented by pets and youngsters.

Coralbean is low upkeep and drought tolerant as soon as established. It may well tolerate salt spray and thrives even in sandy soils, making it nice for coastal gardeners.

This plant is native to elements of North America and may be present in Florida and Texas coastal areas. It grows massive the place it doesn’t die again within the winter, so take into account mature dimension when selecting a location in your backyard for this shrub. 

Coral Bean Overview

Frequent Title

Coralbean, Crimson Cardinal

Scientific Title

Erythrina herbacea

Top & Unfold

6-12 toes tall and 3-6 toes large


Full solar to partial shade


Fertile, well-drained, sandy soil


Drought tolerant as soon as established

Pests & Ailments

Leaf miner, root rot

All About Coralbean

Close-up of flowering CoralBean plants in their native environment. It is a perennial shrub consisting of upright stems adorned with characteristic curved thorns. The leaves consist of three leaflets forming a trifoliate structure. Individual leaves are oval in shape with slightly pointed tips. On the tops of the stems, elongated brushes are formed of long tubular flowers of bright red color.
Coralbean is a plant with spiny stems and pink tubular flowers attracting hummingbirds.

Coralbean, additionally referred to as Cherokee bean, is discovered all through the Southeastern United States and Northeastern Mexico and has appeared as an launched species in Pakistan. It really works properly in tropical gardens, the place it’s evergreen.

In areas that obtain extended freezing and below-freezing temperatures, it dies again to the bottom for the winter. Overwinter it indoors or in a greenhouse in the event you stay above USDA rising zone 8. 

The stems are coated in curved spines, and the foliage is yellowish-green. Brilliant pink tubular flowers seem from April to July that entice a wide range of pollinators.

Delay the blooms into the autumn by deadheading the spent flowers. The flowers finally start to die again and produce pods that include shiny pink seeds, from which this plant will get its frequent title, coral bean. 


Coralbean Care

Coral bean is low upkeep and drought tolerant as soon as established, making it comparatively simple to develop. Learn on to decide on one of the best planting website and supply it with every little thing it must thrive! 

Solar and Temperature

Close-up of the flowers of a CoralBean plant in a sunny garden. The flowers are tubular, elongated, bright coral-red hue. The flowers are collected in racemes on the tops of tall woody stems.
Coralbean prefers full solar.

Coralbean requires full solar however tolerates partial shade, though it might not bloom profusely partly shade circumstances. Should you stay in an space that receives a tough freeze, overwinter your coralbean indoors or in a greenhouse, or present further safety like frost cowl or further mulch. In any other case, it may be grown as an annual in these areas. 

Coralbean grows as a perennial in USDA rising zones 8-11; their preferrred temperature vary is 65-80 levels Fahrenheit. At extended temperatures above 90 levels, the plant might wrestle, affecting the quantity of blooms. 

Water and Humidity

Close-up of the flowers of a CoralBean plant covered in raindrops, in a garden. The flowers are bright red, tubular, elongated, collected in raceme at the top of the stem.
Coralbean enjoys common watering when younger and turns into drought-resistant as soon as established.

This heat-loving plant likes to be well-watered however not waterlogged. Water newly transplanted coralbean as soon as per week to assist it get established.

As soon as established, this shrub turns into a drought-tolerant pollinator plant and can solely want further water throughout prolonged durations with out rain. Nonetheless, it’s higher to underwater than overwater this plant because it doesn’t do properly in soggy circumstances. Coralbean may be adaptable in the case of humidity and tolerates numerous circumstances. 


Close-up of flowering CoralBeans shrubs in the garden, with a black label indicating the type of plant. The shrub forms vertical stems with trifoliate complex bright green leaves. The leaves consist of oval leaflets with slightly pointed tips. The plant produces elongated racemes of bright red tubular flowers that attract hummingbirds and pollinators.
Coralbean prefers well-draining sandy soils, avoiding waterlogged circumstances and extreme natural matter.

Coralbean grows greatest in sandy soils and different well-draining mediums. Soggy soil can result in fungal illnesses like root rot.

An excessive amount of natural matter or compost causes soil to carry on to a number of moisture which may profit different crops, however coralbean prefers lean, well-drained soil varieties. This is good news if in case you have poor soil. You don’t should amend it for coralbean to thrive! 


Close-up of Coralbean flowers in a sunny garden. The plant has a cluster of elongated tubular coral-red flowers.
As soon as established, coralbean is low upkeep and doesn’t want fertilizing.

Coralbean is a low-maintenance shrub that doesn’t require fertilizing as soon as established. Younger crops can profit from fertilizing within the spring to enhance preliminary progress, however this isn’t obligatory. Should you select to fertilize, use a balanced fertilizer (like 10-10-10) and comply with the appliance directions on the packaging. 


Close-up of a flowering CoralBean shrub in a sunny garden. This perennial shrub produces upright, spiked stems of red, elongated tubular flowers. The leaves consist of three leaflets forming a trifoliate structure. Leaflets are oval in shape, with pointed tips, bright green.
Coralbean wants minimal pruning throughout energetic progress.

Coralbean doesn’t require a lot pruning throughout its energetic rising interval. In most areas, it’ll die again over the winter.

You’ll wish to prune useless stem suggestions when new progress seems within the spring. Take away useless or broken branches and stems at any level within the rising season. Put on gloves to guard your self from the thorns on the stems when pruning. 


Close-up of a flowering CoralBean against a blurred background. The flowers are tubular, slightly elongated, bright, red-pink.
Take semi-hardwood cuttings in late summer time.

Take semi-hardwood cuttings within the late summer time or early fall. Take away any flowers or seed pods from the cuttings. Take away the bottom leaves so the chopping’s decrease one to 2 inches are naked.

Dip the lower finish right into a rooting hormone for woody crops. Place the chopping into coarse sand and preserve properly watered till roots type. 

You’ll be able to propagate coralbean by division of the basis ball. Wait till the plant is properly established with loads of progress to separate earlier than attempting this methodology.

Dig up the plant and divide down the middle of the basis ball utilizing your palms or a shovel (relying on the dimensions of the basis ball) to separate it aside. Replant every part individually and preserve them well-watered till they start to place out new progress. 


Close-up of a CoralBean in bloom against a blurred background of trees and a blue sky. The plant produces tall, upright stems with tubular flowers clustered at the tops. The flowers are tubular, elongated, coral-red.
Coralbean can thrive in containers with a well-draining potting combine.

Coralbean may be grown in containers, however selecting a well-draining potting medium is crucial. Most potting mediums retain moisture, however since coralbean prefers to dry out between waterings, you could must amend your potting combine with perlite to extend the drainage.

Repotting will rely on progress. It’s best to test your pot every year. If the roots attain the outer edges of the pot, it’s time to dimension up. 


Whereas coralbean is a comparatively low-maintenance plant that may survive with out a lot intervention, some points can come up. Establish these points on the early phases to forestall them from turning into extra important issues that trigger injury or the demise of your plant. 

Rising Issues

Close-up of a flowering CoralBean against a green garden blurred background. The plant has an upright stem with bright red flowers. The flowers are tubular, grouped in racemes.
Coralbean wants 6-8 hours of direct daylight every day for optimum flowering.

In case your coralbean is affected by a lack of blooms, a scarcity of direct daylight might be the trigger. This plant will flower one of the best when it receives no less than 6-8 hours of direct daylight every day.

It may well survive in partial shade, though it may not flower as profusely. These shrubs can’t tolerate full-shade environments. The very best method is to watch a possible planting website at totally different factors within the yr to make sure it constantly receives 6-8 hours of daylight every day, even throughout the winter.

In case your planting website has lower than preferrred daylight and also you’ve already planted, dig it up and transfer it to a greater location. Monitor the sunshine circumstances beforehand to avoid wasting your self this step. 


Close-up of a damaged leaf miner. The leaf has a characteristic pattern caused by the feeding activity of the larva. These small insects tunnel between the upper and lower surfaces of the leaf, creating serpentine or winding tracks that often resemble twisting pathways.
Leaf miners are larvae that create swirl patterns on leaves.

The leaf miner is a small larva that feeds between the 2 layers of leaf materials. Should you see a swirling sample showing on the foliage, this is a sign of leaf miners. The one method to management these miners is to take away contaminated plant materials.

The very best protection is an efficient offense. Offering numerous habitats for predatory bugs like ladybugs, the praying mantis, paper wasps, and so forth., will preserve these pests in test. 


Top view, close-up of a flowering CoralBean plant in a garden, against a blurred background of dark green foliage. The plant has an upright stem with flowers grouped in elongated clusters. The flowers are tubular, elongated, bright red-coral color.
Coralbean is prone to root rot, seen as wilted, mushy stems and roots.

Root rot is the first illness that may have an effect on your coralbean. Root rot signs seem as mushy mushy stems, wilting, and (as ought to be anticipated) rotten roots. The sort of rot is tough to get better from. You’ll be able to treatment it if the recent, white roots on the plant haven’t but turned to mush.

Reduce the rotted roots and plant them right into a pot of dry soil. To keep away from this challenge within the first place, make sure to not overwater your coralbean or let it sit in waterlogged soil. This promotes the fungal progress that causes root rot. 

Remaining Ideas

This native perennial is a stunner in rising zones 8-11, and a wonderful annual in colder areas. Develop coralbean in the event you’d like so as to add curiosity to a border and entice hummingbirds and different pollinators to your backyard. It’s low upkeep and drought tolerant and can survive diverse circumstances.  

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