Plumeria commemorates Charles Plumier, a seventeenth-century French botanist who described several tropical species. The genus contains 8 species of mainly deciduous shrubs and trees, originally from Central America, known for their strongly fragrant flowers. The tree can reach a height of 9m, though they are generally much smaller. Their fleshy branches contain a poisonous, milk sap. In the tropics, the terminally held flowers (generally white) appear before the leaves and continue to flower for most of the year. In subtropical climates the flowers appear in spring, after the leaves, and continue growing until the next winter. The fruit consist of 2 leathery follicles, althought the trees rarely fruit in cultivation. Most plumerias in gardens are hybrids. Plumerias are very salt tolerant.