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      Prosopis glandulosa (Image: Britton, N.L., and A. Brown. 1913. Illustrated flora of the northern states and Canada. Vol. 2: 333) - Click for full size   Prosopis glandulosa (Photo: W.L. Wagner @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database) - Click for full size   Prosopis glandulosa (Photo:Gary A. Monroe @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database) - Click for full size   Prosopis glandulosa (Photo:Gary A. Monroe @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database) - Click for full size
    Taxonomic name: Prosopis glandulosa Torr.
    Synonyms:
    Common names: honey mesquite (English), mesquite (English), Mesquite-Busch (German), Texas mesquite (English)
    Organism type: tree
    Prosopis glandulosa (mesquite) is a perennial, woody, deciduous shrub or small tree. It forms impenetrable thickets that compete strongly with native species for available soil water, suppress grass growth and may reduce understory species diversity.
    Description
    Multi-stemmed shrub, branches with zigzag shape. Bipinnate leaves generally dark green but can be bluish green, leaflets 5-15 times as long as broad (20mm long). Flowers are yellow and grouped in dense drooping "lamb's tail" spikes. Seed pods bean-like (10-20cm long) with slight constrictions. Spines above axillary bud.
    Occurs in:
    desert, range/grasslands, riparian zones, ruderal/disturbed, scrub/shrublands
    Habitat description
    Occurs over climatically diverse regions, grows well on all soil types. Thrives in high temps >38°C. Moderate frost tolerance. Moderate salt tolerance. Pods high in sugar (16%) and protein (12%) and so are sought by animals.
    General impacts
    Rapidly outcompetes understorey plants resulting in complete loss of grass cover. Erosion is exacerbated by allelopathic affects of ground litter.
    Notes
    Occurs over climatically diverse regions, grows well on all soil types. Thrives in high temps >38°C. Moderate frost tolerance. Moderate salt tolerance. Pods high in sugar (16%) and protein (12%) and so are sought by animals.
    Geographical range
    Native range: Native to SW USA (Texas, Kansas, west to California) and central Mexico and Baja California.
    Known introduced range: It has been introduced to: Saudi Arabia, Burma, India, Pakistan, Puerto Rico, southern Africa and Australia.
    Management information
    Preventative measures: A Risk assessment of Prosopis spp. for Australia was prepared by Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER) using the Australian risk assessment system (Pheloung, 1995). The result is a score of 20 and a recommendation of: reject the plant for import (Australia) or species likely to be a pest (Pacific).

    The Best Practice Manual Mesquite Control and management options for mesquite (Prosopis spp.) in Australia aims to provide the most current information on mesquite in Australia. The control and management options presented in this manual are the combined results of years of trials carried out by many dedicated researchers, landholders, herbicide companies, government officers, landcare groups and others. As mesquite species respond differently to control methods, the most effective method or combination of methods will vary depending on the size, density and species of mesquite present. The manual includes a 'mesquite control tool box'. Included also are a number of case studies to demonstrate best practice.

    Nutrition
    No signficance nutrient requirements.
    Reproduction
    Seed production and suckering (dormant buds below the ground, stimulated by disturbance).
    10's of thousands of seeds per square metre per year, seedling mortality high less than 800 seedlings per hectare after one year
    Lifecycle stages
    Seeds viable 2-50 years. Maturity 2-5 years. Flowering commences in summer. Seeds mature 35-40 days after flowering. Plants may be deciduous. Seeds germinate after warm temperatures and rain, these conditions may occur only sopradically. Spread facilitated by grazing animals.
    This species has been nominated as among 100 of the "World's Worst" invaders
    Reviewed by: Craig Walton, Senior Policy Officer (Ecologist), Land Protection, Department of Natural Resources and Mines, Queensland, Australia.
    Compiled by: IUCN/SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG)
    Updates with support from the Overseas Territories Environmental Programme (OTEP) project XOT603, a joint project with the Cayman Islands Government - Department of Environment
    Last Modified: Tuesday, 13 April 2010


ISSG Landcare Research NBII IUCN University of Auckland