"It is a thorny deciduous tree growing to 27 m (89 ft) tall. The leaves are pinnate with a 20 cm petiole and three leaflets, each leaflet up to 20 cm long and broad. It has dense clusters of scarlet or crimson flowers and black seeds. It is valued as an ornamental tree. Several cultivars have been selected, including 'Alba' with white flowers. It was designated the official flower of Okinawa Prefecture in 1967. The deigo flower features in the popular song "Shima Uta" by The Boom, one of the most well-known songs associated with Okinawa. In addition, the use of the wood of the deigo tree is one of the unique characteristics of Ryukyuan lacquerware."
In Vietnam, the leaves are used to wrap fermented meat.