desertfern Fabaceae Lysiloma
watsonii Rose symbol: LYWA
Leaf: Alternate, evergreen (drought deciduous), bipinnately compound, 3 to 5 inches long, with 4 to 10 pairs of major leaflets and numerous pairs of very small minor, very finely divided leaflets, entire, leaf rather feathery looking, bright green to grayish green.
Flower: Creamy white, round cluster, 1/2 inch across on a slender 1 inch stem, appearing in late spring in open terminal clusters.
Fruit: A 4 to 8 inch long, 1/2 inch wide flat legume, dark reddish brown to nearly black, flattened seeds inside.
Twig: Slender, reddish brown, zig zag, speckled with lighter lenticels, thornless.
Bark: Gray to reddish brown, developing scaly, loose patches.
Form: Small, multi-stemmed tree or large, wide spreading shrub reaching up to 20 feet tall with sn open airy crown.
Looks like: palo blanco - guajillo - whitethorn acacia
Additional Range Information: Lysiloma watsonii is native to North America. Range may be expanded by planting. See states reporting desertfern.
External Links: USDA Plants Database - USDAFS Forest Products Lab
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