Virginia Tech Dendrology

lotebush Rhamnaceae Ziziphus obtusifolia (Hook. ex Torr. & A. Gray) A. Gray Listen to the Latin symbol: ZIOB
Leaf: Alternate, drought deciduous, 3/4 inch long, ovate, elliptical or oblong, entire or a few teeth.
Flower: Very small, inconspicuous, pale green, appear in small clusters in the leaf axils in early spring.
Fruit: Round to elliptical, 1/4 inch juicy drupe, dark blue to black, maturing in early summer.
Twig: Slender, stiff, light gray to gray-green, finely hairy, numerous stout thorns 1 to 3 inches long at nearly right angles to stem, small gray buds.
Bark: Light gray-brown and smooth, numerous stout thorns.
Form: A very spiny, tangled shrub up to 8 feet in height and width.
leaf flower fruit twig bark form1 map
Additional Range Information: Ziziphus obtusifolia is native to North America. Range may be expanded by planting. See states reporting lotebush.
External Links: USDAFS Additional Silvics - USDA Plants Database
All material © 2017 Virginia Tech Dept. of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation; Photos and text by: John Seiler, Edward Jensen, Alex Niemiera, and John Peterson