Prosopis pubescens (Screwbean Mesquite), is a small tree or shrub found in the southwestern United States (Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, California, southern Nevada and Utah) and Mexico. It has light brown bark, usually short, straight spines (1-3 cm), twice-compound leaves, and numerous, small, yellowish flowers appearing in elongate spikes. It is found along streams and valleys in deserts particularly in damp or saline soil, and grows to about 7 meters (20 ft). The tree is also called "Tornillo" or simply "Screwbean". The name arises because the tightly twisted legumes very much resemble a turned screw. This morphology may have been an evolutionary defense against seed predators such as bruchid beetles (bean weevils).
Inflorescence of Prosopis pubescens
Approximate Nutritional Value of Mesquite Pod Meal Amt/100g Protein 16 g Fat 3.4 g Calories 380 Fiber 36 g
Minerals: Barium 3.7 mg Boron 3.2 mg Calcium 520 mg Chromium 0.12 mg Cobalt 0.03 mg Copper 0.8 mg Iron 18 mg Magnesium 140 mg Manganese 2.3 mg Molybdenum 0.05 mg Phosphorus 215 mg Potassium 1712 mg Sodium 12 mg Sulfur 222 mg Zinc 3.0 mg