Max Licher @, Usage Rights: Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike (CC BY-SA)
Yavapai County Native & Naturalized Plants
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Patrick Alexander @, Usage Rights: Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike (CC BY-SA)
Plant Image
Max Licher @, Usage Rights: Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike (CC BY-SA)
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Leslie Landrum @, Usage Rights Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike (CC BY-SA)
Plant Description

Origin: Native
General Description: Deciduous. A slow growing, long-lived deciduous tree or shrub that drops its leaves during drought. Palo verde means "green pole or stick" in Spanish, referring to the green trunk and branches, that perform photosynthesis.
Identification notes: Likes hillsides. Bark yellowish-green; tiny leaflets; flowers <1/2 inch long, often 1 white petal among the yellow petals; inflated seed pods ending in a flat triangular or sword-shaped beak. Tiny leaftlets distinguish this from P. florida.
Height: 10 to 13 feet     Width: Unavailable


Habitat Description: Abundant on bajadas (alluvial fan at foot of mountain), plains and hillslopes through low desert.
Plant Communities: Desert Scrub
Elevation: 0 - 4000 feet


Color: Pale yellow   Shape: Irregular in elongated clusters    Tubular: Y   Flowering Period: Apr - May
Description: Bicolored with 4 yellow petals and 1 white banner. Bisexual, pea-like flower in small clusters of 4 to 8 flowers. The plant may not flower every year, depends on available moisture.


Leaf Color: Yellowish-green   Type: Compound   Shape: Round or oval   Margin: Smooth   Attachment: Alternate   Hairs: N
Description: Leaves are borne on thorn tipped stems; 4 to 8 pairs of leaflets, 1 pair of leaflets lacking a stem; leaflets very small, broadly elliptic to broadly oblong or rounded.


Color: Green   Type: Pod   Description: Fruit is a legume on a stalk-like base. It is hard, round and the green color will become brown when dry.


Bark Color: Green   Bark Texture (Mature): Smooth   Bark and Branch Description: Spines at nodes or thorns in the leaf axis. Most photosynthesis is done in the bark.
Spines, thorns or prickles: Y

  Arizona Cooperative Extension
Yavapai County
840 Rodeo Dr #C
Prescott, AZ 86305
(928) 445-6590
Version 8.0  
Last Updated: Nov 21, 2021
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