The mahogany tree (Swietenia mahagoni) is a large tropical tree with a semievergreen growth habit. Mahogany trees produce broad, spreading growth with foliage that can span 50 feet in width and 75 feet in height at maturity.

The mahogany is a tropical tree that grows in U.S. Department of Agriculture hardiness zones 10a through 11.

Plant Specs: This tree is a moderate to fast grower that can reach 35 to 40 feet with a wide-spreading canopy. It does best in full to part sun. These are tropical trees that need the warmth of Zone 10 to thrive. Frost will cause damage in areas of Zone 10 that border Zone 9B, and even in warmer areas they can thin out a bit if winter is harsh. A mahogany is considered semi-deciduous.

This means that though it keeps it leaves nearly year-round, the tree pushes out old leaves for a very brief period in spring before new ones appear. Mahogany's salt tolerance makes it a good shade tree for planting on a coastal property.

Plant Care: Although mahogany trees are South Florida native trees, they appreciate soil enrichment and regular irrigation and fertilization. Add top soil (or organic peat humus) and composted cow manure to the hole when you plant.

No trimming is needed as long as you've placed the tree well to allow for mature size. When the leaves drop in spring, they can be quickly cleaned up with a leaf blower. Water on a regular basis. Fertilize 3 times a year in spring, summer and fall with a good quality granular fertilizer.

Plant Spacing: Because of its potential for developing a wide crown, place a mahogany at least 15 feet from the house. Come in from walks and drives at least 8 feet more if you can to avoid problems with the surface roots of a mature tree lifting paved areas.