Pseudobombax ellipticum ‘Alba’ – White Shaving Brush (4″ pot)


This deciduous tropical flowering tree produces large white flowers in the spring time when mature. The flowers resemble a shaving brush or even a fiber optic flashlight! Plants grown in a container develop a fat trunk resembling a turtle’s shell. We also sell the grafted pink shaving brush plant.

Ships in 4″ pot. These are seedlings. Does not come with flowers.

In stock


If planted in a tropical area with good soil and given plenty of water, this magnificent flowering tree can get really big, perhaps as tall as 50′-70′. If kept potted and trimmed, the tree can be kept around 3′ tall. The way that the tree is going to end up looking will depend on where you live and how you grow it.

If you live in frost prone areas, then you have to grow the Shaving Brush in pots and the tree will be short and fat. A caudex will form (fat base) sometimes resembling a turtle shell. Pseudobombax are grown in full to partial sun. It is a deciduous tree and will lose their leaves in the winter. They should be kept a little dry at this time. In the spring, it will bloom when the tree still has no leaves (when mature or grafted). You should increase the water a little at this time of the year. After the flowers are gone, the leaves will sprout and if you need to, you can trim the tree. By now it is time to start a regular (average) water schedule and fertilizing. Repotting is only needed once the trunk or caudex is outgrowing the pot. They like small pots and will form the fat base faster.

FAMILY : Bombacaceae
ORIGIN : Mexico
MATURE SIZE : 50′ tree in tropical climate but can be kept much smaller in a container
GROWTH RATE : fast in ground, slow in pot
LIGHT REQUIREMENTS : full to partial sun (outdoors)
WATER REQUIREMENTS : average during warm months and little in the winter
MIN. TEMP. : low 30’s for a short period on mature plants, better to keep about 40°F
FLOWER : spring on mature or grafted trees

All photos are of my mother plants, not the plants for sale.

Additional information

Weight 1.5 lbs
Dimensions 6 × 9 × 24 in
Gardino Nursery