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A stunning, large tree with long, spreading branches and blunt-tipped leaves with light green veins, neatly whorled around the branches. The large cream to yellow flowers grow on leafless inflorescences directly on the trunk and lower branches. The remarkable fruits are the size, shape and color of a slightly rusty cannonball and a tree loaded with these is quite a sight. Native to lowland forests from Nicaragua to Ecuador, C. nicaraguarensis is one of three species in this genus but much less commonly encountered in cultivation than Couroupita guianensis, which has red flowers. A great, easy to grow tree for the tropical garden though ideally situated away from walkways and streets because of falling fruits.