Earpod trees (Enterolobium cyclocarpum), also called ear trees, are tall shade trees with a wide, spreading canopy. The tree can grow 75 feet tall or more. The spiral pods measure 3 to 4 inches in diameter. Earpod trees are native to Central America and northern parts of South America, and have been introduced to the Southern tips of North America. They prefer a climate with both a humid and dry season, but they will grow in any amount of humidity. The trees are deciduous, dropping their leaves during the dry season. They bloom before they leaf out, when the rainy season begins. The pods that follow the flowers take a year to ripen and fall from the tree the following year. Costa Rica adopted the earpod as its national tree because of its many uses. It provides both shade and food. People roast the seeds and eat them, and the whole pod serves as a nutritious food for cattle. Growing earpod trees on coffee plantations provide coffee plants with just the right amount of shade, and the trees serve as habitat for many species of reptiles, birds, and insects. The wood resists termite and fungi, and is used to make paneling and veneer.