western honey mesquite

Honey Mesquite

Honey Mesquite (Prosopis glandulosa) is a medium to small tree with rounded crown and crooked, drooping branches with feathery foliage and straight paired spines on twigs. This tree normally grows to 20 to 30 feet but can grow as tall as 50 feet. It flowers from March to November with pale, yellow, elongated spikes and bears straight, yellow pods which are consumed by a number of wild animal species. It is considered to have a medium growth rate.

This variety of mesquite, known as haas [ʔaːs] by the Seri people of northwestern Mexico, was very important for food and non-food uses. The Seris had specific names for various stages of the growth of the mesquite pod. Historically, it was a very important wild food plant because it fruits even during drought years.

Native only to the southwestern USA and northern Mexico, honey mesquite has been introduced to at least a half-dozen other countries. The IUCN considers it as one of the world's 100 worst invasive species.


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