The "Shaving Brush Tree" (better known to scientists as Pseudobombax ellipticum) is a lovely deciduous species native to southern Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras.
It's been said that the importance of the Shaving Brush Tree to the Mayan civilizations can be demonstrated by its appearance on their ceramic artworks. Then again, it could just mean that they simply thought it a pretty flower, same as us.
For me, it's impossible to look upon these fuzzy-headed fiber-optic-lookin' flowers without seeing Beaker from the Muppet Show. (Then again, I seem to have a tendency to see his face a lot.) Since next to nobody alive today knows what a shaving brush is, I vote we change the common slang name of the tree to "The Beaker Tree." C'mon, y'all, let's do it for Jim Henson.