The fruit of the Skeleton Tree, called Triloe, is rusty-orange in color and about the size of a small hand fruit. Its skin is soft and fuzzy to the touch, and its texture is slightly firm and juicy. The unique sweet-tart flavor of the fruit makes it highly desirable for culinary dishes, but special training and licensing is required to serve any dish using Triloe. The seeds of the fruit are extremely deadly if ingested.
Triloe seeds are very small and threaded throughout the core of the fruit. The unique trait about these seeds is that they only germinate and mature in the gastrointestinal tract. If one or more are swallowed the seeds will gather nutrients from hydrochloric acid and partially digested food in the stomach and quickly sprout small, hook-like roots with which they'll attach themselves to the upper small intestine, just below the pyloric sphincter. They release a chemical that deadens pain receptors and prevents deterioration of organs, which allows them to spread throughout the digestive system undetected until they eventually kill the host.
Because the hosts of these trees take longer to decompose the shoots will continue feeding on dead tissues and grow up through the oesophagus and out the mouth. Once the Triloe reaches sunlight it will sprout small, tear-shaped leaves and begin to feed solely by means of photosynthesis and stop producing embalming chemicals. The host will then rot away while the roots establish themselves into the soil.
The twisted, dark trunks of Skeleton Tree saplings are infamous grave markers, and well known for their beautiful clusters of cream-white flowers contrasted by the grim skeleton surrounding its base from which it got its name.
The Skeleton Root grows pretty darn fast and absorbs most of the food and water going through the digestive tract, so the host would die in about five days, maybe sooner or longer depending on the circumstances.
As for the color of the bark, it's a dark blackish-brown, and it's texture is very smooth for easy travel through the host. Eventually the branches twist around themselves until the tree looks like a messy braid, which is pretty cool. The leaves are simple tear shapes and are dark pine green.