We use it to make rat and fish poison, yet the Seminole used it to alleviate rheumatic pain and digestive problems, and the Choctaw used it as a general tonic. Every part of it is laced with toxic alkaloids known to cause paralysis.
Poisonous capabilities notwithstanding, it’s hard to miss the beauty of coral bean (a.k.a. red cardinal, cardinal spear or Cherokee bean; Erythrina herbacea).
Though not common in my neck of the woods, it grows abundantly at the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge on the Gulf Coast, thus I get to enjoy it when I visit my favorite nature getaway.
Beautiful when flowering, it’s equally stunning when the pods mature into ebony cases around crimson seeds.
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Pardon the recent dearth of activity here. Extenuating circumstances have had me otherwise occupied, including relocating from Dallas to the more rustic charm of East Texas. Hopefully as things settle down I’ll have a better opportunity to catch up with online activities. Until then, be well and be safe!