People in Spain call it “manzanilla de la muerte” – to the rest of the world the Manchineel tree is known as one of the deadliest trees on the planet.
The tree grows in the Bahamas, Florida, Central and South America and the Caribbean. It reaches up to 15 feet in height and has green to yellow-ish fruit, which is similar to apples. The tree’s structure is a great wind-break and its roots prevent sand erosion, but these pros are as far as the tree’s advantages go. Every single inch of the Manchineel is so toxic that it causes blisters, burns, poisoning, blindness, edemas, shock and extreme bacterial infections. The tree is so deadly that even a single drop of rain, which has touched the Manchineel, can cause severe burns and blisters on the skin. Not only that, but the Carib people have used its lethal properties to fight off enemies.
The tree’s leaves were used to poison the water of any Carib enemies, while the Carib arrows were usually poisoned by the tree’s toxic sap.