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Parkinsonia aculeata
Parkinsonia aculeata

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Zones 8-29, H1, H2
Full Sun
Regular WaterMinimal Water
Moderate, Minimal

Parkinsonia aculeata

Mexican Palo Verde
Fabaceae (Leguminosae)
Deciduous, Trees

Native to southwestern U.S., Mexico. Rapid growth at first, then slowing; eventually reaches 15 to 30 ft. high and wide. Yellow-green bark, spiny twigs, picturesque form. Sparse foliage; leaves 6–9 in. long,with many tiny leaflets that quickly fall in drought or cold. Numerous yellow flowers in loose, 3–7-in.-long clusters. Long bloom season in spring; intermittent bloom throughout year. Flowers are followed by 2–6-in.-long seed pods that mature in summer. Tolerates alkaline soil. Requires minimal attention once established. As shade tree, it filters sun rather than blocking it. Litter drop is a problem. Thorns, sparse foliage rule it out of tailored gardens. Reseeds freely in the desert. Flowering branches are attractive in arrangements.

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