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Simmondsia chinensis
Simmondsia chinensis

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Zone
Zones 7-24
Full Sun
Full
Minimal Water
Minimal

Simmondsia chinensis

Jojoba, Goatnut
Simmondsiaceae
Evergreen, Shrubs

Native to the Sonoran Desert of the United States and Mexico. Dense plant with rigid branches; typically grows to 3–6 ft. tall and wide, occasionally larger. Dull gray-green leaves are leathery, narrowly egg-shaped, 1–2 in. long. Inconspicuous flowers. If a male plant is present, females bear edible, nutlike fruit 3/4 in. long; flavor is like that of filbert but slightly bitter until the fruit is dried or roasted. The fruit’s high oil content gives the plant commercial value as crop for marginal land, though such plantings are chancy in soil infested with verticillium wilt or Texas root rot. Useful as an informal or clipped hedge or a foundation planting in desert gardens. Young plants are rather tender; established ones will take 15°F/–9°C.

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