Violet tree is a moderately-large tree, typically 15 - 40 feet in height but can be taller. It has an upright moderately dense crown of irregular shape and branching. The bark is gray, smooth to slightly fissured. Leaves are alternate, smooth and leathery, elliptical, yellowish green, shiny above dull beneath, 2 - 5 x 1 - 2 1/2 inches, with a short stem. Like many deciduous tropical flowering trees, it flowers when the leaves have fallen. Flowers are a violet purple, 3/4 inch across and profuse, borne in short lateral clusters. The fruit is a flat capsule 1 1/4 - 1 1/2 inches long with 2 rounded wings, 1 large, the other small, containing 1 or 2 seeds, which are used for propagation. In habitat, violet tree grows on hillsides in limestone soils with good drainage. Very little is known about the science of this species, but it has obvious landscaping applications with its attractive foliage and showy colorful flowers. An excellent accent or specimen plant in gardens and parks, it is not widely planted. Violet tree is endemic to and endangered in the wild in puerto rico.