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Velvet Mesquite, Arizona Mesquite
Scientific Name: Prosopis velutina Woot.
Synonym: Prosopis juliflora var. velutina, Prosopis chilensis var. velutina, Neltuma velutina, Prosopis articulata, Prosopis juliflora var. articulata, Prosopis juliflora auct. p.p. non (Sw.) DC.
Family: Fabaceae
Recommended Temperature Zone:
sunset: 10-13
USDA: 8b-10

Sun Exposure: Full sun

Origin: USA (Arizona, western New Mexico), Mexico (Sonora) at low to medium elevation

Growth Habits: Deciduous thorny shrub or small tree, 25 to 50 feet tall (7.5-15 m), 15 to 25 feet wide (4.5-7.5 m); mature bark is thick, rough, dark brown, shredding in strips, while the bark on young stem is green, helping in photosynthesis; stout, yellow thorns, 0.24 to 1 inch long (6-25 mm); bipinnate leaves with one pair of pinnae bearing 14 to 30 pairs of dark green, short, hairy, and closely spaced leaflets, 0.32 to 0.5 inch long (8-12 mm)

Watering Needs: Infrequent deep watering

Propagation: Seeds that need scarification. Since the mesquites hybridize easily, special care has to be taken to insure that the seeds are not of hybrid origin

The Velvet Mesquite is classified a noxious weed in North Carolina and Florida.

Blooming Habits:
Yellowish green flowers, on a 2 to 3 inches long (5-7.5 cm) catkin-looking cylindrical raceme, in clusters of 2 to 6, in early summer

Fruiting Habits:
Edible, slender, flattened, yellow, red, black, or mottled, seed pods, 2.8 to 9 inches long (7-22.5 cm), 0.28 to 0.5 inch wide (7-12 mm), solitary or in drooping clusters, ripening in mid to late summer.

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