What is Screwbean Mesquite
Below is a transcription of the above sign found at the Valley of Fire Visitor Center.
Screwbean Mesquite or Tornilla
- Kingdom: Plantae
- Clade: Tracheophytes
- Clade: Angiosperms
- Clade: Eudicots
- Clade: Rosids
- Order: Fabales
- Family: Fabaceae
- Subfamily: Caesalpinioideae
- Clade: Mimosoid clade
- Genus: Prosopis
- Species: P. pubescens
ADAPTATION FOR SURVIVAL:
Fast growing tap root penetrates up to 80 feet (27 m.) to reach the permanent water table.
The reliable water supply allows this shrub to put out its leaves in late spring after shallow-rooted plants already have bee bloomed.
The bean and flower are edible by humans and animals.
Mesquite gum has many uses: treatment for sore throats and eyes; paints and pottery dyes; chewing gum.
Groundwater: subsurface water supply stored in soils.
Arroyo Woodland and Sand Dune Barrens
April – May
Grows along streams, washes, and permanent springs; often forms thickets.
Below 4000 feet (1333 m.)
SOURCE OF WATER:
Intermittent or permanent streams, springs, groundwater.
15 to 25 feet (5 to 8.3 m.)