St. Thomas tree is a small tree or many-stemmed shrub. As a tree it normally reaches a height of 12-24 feet, but can grow taller. The branches are often drooping and have numerous slender twigs. The bark is gray and smooth, becoming brown in color as the tree ages. The leaves are alternate, leathery, deeply divided, bilobate, pale green, with entire margins and a leaf stalk, and are 1-3 inches long and wide; they resembles a butterfly. Flowers are bell-shaped, pendulous, yellow with a black to maroon center, 2-3 inches long. The fruit is a slender, brown, velvety, woody pod about 4 inches long, containing several reddish seeds, used for propagation. Nearly all the parts of the tree play a role in traditional medicine. Seeds are said to be poisionous; handling the plant can cause an allergic reaction. In cultivation, st. Thomas tree tolerates various soil types if well-drained. This tree is an outstanding medium-sized ornamental with its showy flowers and very unusual leaves. It can be grown as a specimen or street tree, in a large planter or large conservatory. As a shrub, it provides an excellent barrier or boundary planting, and is easily pruned. It does not have aggressive roots and can be cultivated close to buildings.