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Starr 010209-0260 Parkinsonia aculeata.jpg
Flowers and leaves of Parkinsonia aculeata
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Fabales
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily: Caesalpinioideae [1]
Type species
Parkinsonia aculeata
L. [2]

See text


Cercidiopsis Britton & Rose
Cercidium Tul.
Peltophoropsis Chiov.
Rhetinophloeum H.Karst. [3]


Parkinsonia /ˌpɑːrkɪnˈsniə/ , also Cercidium /sərˈsɪdiəm/ , [4] is a genus of flowering plants in the pea family, Fabaceae. It contains about 12 species that are native to semi-desert regions of Africa and the Americas. The name of the genus honors English apothecary and botanist John Parkinson (1567–1650). [5]

Flowering plant clade of flowering plants (in APG I-III)

The flowering plants, also known as angiosperms, Angiospermae or Magnoliophyta, are the most diverse group of land plants, with 64 orders, 416 families, approximately 13,164 known genera and c. 369,000 known species. Like gymnosperms, angiosperms are seed-producing plants. However, they are distinguished from gymnosperms by characteristics including flowers, endosperm within the seeds, and the production of fruits that contain the seeds. Etymologically, angiosperm means a plant that produces seeds within an enclosure; in other words, a fruiting plant. The term comes from the Greek words angeion and sperma ("seed").

Pea species of plant

The pea is most commonly the small spherical seed or the seed-pod of the pod fruit Pisum sativum. Each pod contains several peas, which can be green or yellow. Pea pods are botanically fruit, since they contain seeds and develop from the ovary of a (pea) flower. The name is also used to describe other edible seeds from the Fabaceae such as the pigeon pea, the cowpea, and the seeds from several species of Lathyrus.

Fabaceae family of plants

The Fabaceae or Leguminosae, commonly known as the legume, pea, or bean family, are a large and economically important family of flowering plants. It includes trees, shrubs, and perennial or annual herbaceous plants, which are easily recognized by their fruit (legume) and their compound, stipulate leaves. Many legumes have characteristic flowers and fruits. The family is widely distributed, and is the third-largest land plant family in terms of number of species, behind only the Orchidaceae and Asteraceae, with about 751 genera and about 19,000 known species. The five largest of the genera are Astragalus, Acacia, Indigofera, Crotalaria, and Mimosa, which constitute about a quarter of all legume species. The ca. 19,000 known legume species amount to about 7% of flowering plant species. Fabaceae is the most common family found in tropical rainforests and in dry forests in the Americas and Africa.

They are large shrubs or small trees growing to 5–12 m (16–39 ft) tall, dry season deciduous, with sparse, open, thorny crowns and green bark. The leaves are pinnate, sometimes bipinnate, with numerous small leaflets; they are only borne for a relatively short time after rains, with much of the photosynthesis carried out by the green twigs and branches. The flowers are symmetrical or nearly so, with five yellow or white petals. The fruit is a pod containing several seeds.

Shrub type of plant

A shrub or bush is a small- to medium-sized woody plant. Unlike herbaceous plants, shrubs have persistent woody stems above the ground. They are distinguished from trees by their multiple stems and shorter height, and are usually under 6 m (20 ft) tall. Plants of many species may grow either into shrubs or trees, depending on their growing conditions. Small, low shrubs, generally less than 2 m (6.6 ft) tall, such as lavender, periwinkle and most small garden varieties of rose, are often termed "subshrubs".

Tree Perennial woody plant with elongated trunk

In botany, a tree is a perennial plant with an elongated stem, or trunk, supporting branches and leaves in most species. In some usages, the definition of a tree may be narrower, including only woody plants with secondary growth, plants that are usable as lumber or plants above a specified height. Trees are not a taxonomic group but include a variety of plant species that have independently evolved a woody trunk and branches as a way to tower above other plants to compete for sunlight. Trees tend to be long-lived, some reaching several thousand years old. In wider definitions, the taller palms, tree ferns, bananas, and bamboos are also trees. Trees have been in existence for 370 million years. It is estimated that there are just over 3 trillion mature trees in the world.

The dry season is a yearly period of low rainfall, especially in the tropics. The weather in the tropics is dominated by the tropical rain belt, which moves from the northern to the southern tropics and back over the course of the year. The tropical rain belt lies in the southern hemisphere roughly from October to March; during that time the northern tropics have a dry season with sparser precipitation, and days are typically sunny throughout. From April to September, the rain belt lies in the northern hemisphere, and the southern tropics have their dry season. Under the Köppen climate classification, for tropical climates, a dry season month is defined as a month when average precipitation is below 60 millimetres (2.4 in).

Most American species are known by the common name of palo verde or paloverde, from the Spanish words meaning "green pole" or "green stick". This name is derived from its characteristic green trunk. The palo verde (not species-specific) is the state tree of Arizona. [6]

Spanish language Romance language

Spanish or Castilian is a Romance language that originated in the Castile region of Spain and today has hundreds of millions of native speakers in the Americas and Spain. It is a global language and the world's second-most spoken native language, after Mandarin Chinese.

Trunk (botany) main wooden axis of a tree

In botany, the trunk is the stem and main wooden axis of a tree, which is an important feature in tree identification, and which often differs markedly from the bottom of the trunk to the top, depending on the species. The trunk is the most important part of the tree for timber production.

Arizona state of the United States of America

Arizona is a state in the southwestern region of the United States. It is also part of the Western and the Mountain states. It is the sixth largest and the 14th most populous of the 50 states. Its capital and largest city is Phoenix. Arizona shares the Four Corners region with Utah, Colorado, and New Mexico; its other neighboring states are Nevada and California to the west and the Mexican states of Sonora and Baja California to the south and southwest.


A major pollinator for Parkinsonia species in the southwestern United States and western Mexico is Centris pallida , a solitary bee known as the digger or pallid bee. C. pallida obtains nectar and pollen from this plant to fill a brood pot so that their larvae will have food when they hatch. The nectar and pollen give its bee bread a strong orange color. [7]

<i>Centris pallida</i> species of insect

Centris pallida is a species of solitary bee native to North America. It lacks an accepted common name; however, it has been called the digger bee, the desert bee, and the pallid bee due to its actions, habitat, and color respectively. The solitary nature of this bee allows for a dual-strategy mating system which produces an evolutionarily stable state resistant to invading strategies. These bees have also evolved to withstand the high temperatures of their native habitat. C. pallida routinely has internal temperatures within 3 degrees Celsius of death.

Bee pollen Pollen of plant

Bee pollen is a ball or pellet of field-gathered flower pollen packed by worker honeybees, and used as the primary food source for the hive. It consists of simple sugars, protein, minerals and vitamins, fatty acids, and a small percentage of other components. Also called bee bread, or ambrosia, it is stored in brood cells, mixed with saliva, and sealed with a drop of honey. Bee pollen is harvested as food for humans, with various health claims, one of them being that the fermentation process makes it much more potent than simple flower pollen.

Selected species

<i>Parkinsonia aculeata</i> species of plant

Parkinsonia aculeata is a species of perennial flowering tree in the pea family, Fabaceae. Common names include palo verde, Mexican palo verde, Parkinsonia, Jerusalem thorn, jelly bean tree, and palo de rayo.

Carl Linnaeus Swedish botanist, physician, and zoologist

Carl Linnaeus, also known after his ennoblement as Carl von Linné, was a Swedish botanist, physician, and zoologist who formalised binomial nomenclature, the modern system of naming organisms. He is known as the "father of modern taxonomy". Many of his writings were in Latin, and his name is rendered in Latin as Carolus Linnæus.

Argentina federal republic in South America

Argentina, officially the Argentine Republic, is a country located mostly in the southern half of South America. Sharing the bulk of the Southern Cone with Chile to the west, the country is also bordered by Bolivia and Paraguay to the north, Brazil to the northeast, Uruguay and the South Atlantic Ocean to the east, and the Drake Passage to the south. With a mainland area of 2,780,400 km2 (1,073,500 sq mi), Argentina is the eighth-largest country in the world, the fourth largest in the Americas, and the largest Spanish-speaking nation. The sovereign state is subdivided into twenty-three provinces and one autonomous city, Buenos Aires, which is the federal capital of the nation as decided by Congress. The provinces and the capital have their own constitutions, but exist under a federal system. Argentina claims sovereignty over part of Antarctica, the Falkland Islands, and South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands.

Related Research Articles

<i>Eutrochium fistulosum</i> species of plant

Eutrochium fistulosum, also called hollow Joe-Pye weed, trumpetweed, or purple thoroughwort, is a North American flowering plant in the sunflower family. It is native to southern Canada and throughout the eastern and south central United States from Maine west to Ontario, Wisconsin, and Missouri and south as far as Florida and Texas. The species name fistulosum refers to the tubular stem; see fistula.

<i>Leucaena</i> genus of plants

Leucaena is a genus of flowering plants in the mimosoid clade of the subfamily Caesalpinioideae of the legume family Fabaceae. It contains about 24 species of trees and shrubs, which are commonly known as leadtrees. They are native to the Americas, ranging from Texas in the United States south to Peru. The generic name is derived from the Greek word λευκός (leukos), meaning "white," referring to the flowers.

<i>Parkinsonia microphylla</i> species of plant

Parkinsonia microphylla, the yellow paloverde, foothill paloverde or little-leaved palo verde; syn. Cercidium microphyllum), is a species of palo verde.

<i>Parkinsonia florida</i> species of plant

Parkinsonia florida, the blue palo verde, is a species of palo verde native to the Sonoran Deserts in the Southwestern United States and Northwestern Mexico. Its name means "green pole or stick" in Spanish, referring to the green trunk and branches, that perform photosynthesis.


The Centridini are a tribe of large apid bees, many of which possess adaptations for carrying floral oils rather than pollen or nectar. The floral oils are often gathered from plants of the family Malpighiaceae, though other plants may be visited. The oil-collecting species typically have "combs" composed of closely spaced, flattened, blunt bristles on the margins of the first tarsal segments of the front and middle legs; others may have velvety "pads" to absorb the oils. They also commonly gather plant resins for use in nest cell construction. They have a tiny pterostigma in the forewing, the female scopa is very bushy, and the first flagellomere of the antenna is often longer than the scape.

<i>Gentiana andrewsii</i> species of plant

Gentiana andrewsii, the bottle gentian, closed gentian, or closed bottle gentian, is an herbaceous species of flowering plant in the gentian family Gentianaceae. Gentiana andrewsii is native to northeastern North America, from the Dakotas to the East Coast and through eastern Canada.

<i>Prosopis glandulosa</i> species of plant

Prosopis glandulosa, commonly known as honey mesquite, is a species of small to medium-sized, thorny shrub or tree in the legume family (Fabaceae).

<i>Canotia</i> genus of plants

Canotia holacantha, also known as crucifixion thorn or simply canotia, is a flowering shrub / small tree in the family Celastraceae. It is the only species in the genus Canotia.

<i>Olneya</i> species of plant

Olneya tesota is a perennial flowering tree of the Fabaceae family, legumes, which is commonly known as ironwood or desert ironwood. It is the only species in the monotypic genus Olneya. This tree is part of the western Sonoran Desert complex in the Southwestern United States, which includes flora such as palo verde, saguaro, ocotillo, brittlebush, creosote bush, and mesquite.

<i>Lycium andersonii</i> species of plant

Lycium andersonii is a species of flowering plant in the nightshade family, Solanaceae. Its common names include water-jacket, redberry desert-thorn, Anderson thornbush, Anderson's desert thorn, Anderson boxthorn, Anderson lycium, Anderson wolfberry, and squawberry.

Palo Verde or palo verde may refer to:

<i>Phoradendron californicum</i> species of plant

Phoradendron californicum, the desert mistletoe or mesquite mistletoe, is a hemiparasitic plant native to southern California, Nevada, Arizona, Sonora, Sinaloa and Baja California. It can be found in the Mojave and Sonoran Deserts at elevations of up to 1400 m.

<i>Dysphania</i> (plant) genus of plants

Dysphania is a plant genus in the family Amaranthaceae, distributed worldwide from the tropics and subtropics to warm-temperate regions.

<i>Syssphinx hubbardi</i> species of insect

Syssphinx [Sphingicampa] hubbardi, or Hubbard's silk moth, is a species of moth in the family Saturniidae. It is found in Mexico and the southern United States.

Derobrachus hovorei is a species of beetle in the family Cerambycidae, known variously as the palo verde beetle, palo verde root borer, or palo verde borer beetle. For over 100 years, this species was confused with the related species Derobrachus geminatus, and only recognized and given its own name by Santos-Silva in 2007; essentially all literature prior to 2007 therefore incorrectly uses the name geminatus for this species. It is a longhorn beetle native to the American Southwest and northern Mexico which derives its common name from the palo verde tree, and it is one of the largest beetles in North America, reaching up to three and a half inches in length. Adults are black or brown in color, have long antennae, and spines on the thorax. They have wings and can fly, albeit awkwardly at times. Mature beetles emerge in the summer to mate. Adults do not eat, and rely solely on their energy reserves until they die in about one month. While not harmful to humans, they can bite in self-defense.

Parkinsonia texana is a species of perennial flowering tree in the pea family, Fabaceae, native to Texas and the Mexican states of Coahuila, Nuevo Leon, San Luis Potosi, and Tamaulipas. Common names include Texas palo verde, Border palo verde, and Retama china.


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  2. "Parkinsonia L." TROPICOS. Missouri Botanical Garden. Retrieved 2010-02-10.
  3. "Genus: Parkinsonia L." Germplasm Resources Information Network. United States Department of Agriculture. 2000-04-07. Retrieved 2010-02-10.
  4. Sunset Western Garden Book, 1995:606–607
  5. Quattrocchi, Umberto (2000). CRC World Dictionary of Plant Names: Common Names, Scientific Names, Eponyms, Synonyms, and Etymology. III: M-Q. p. 1966. ISBN   978-0-8493-2673-8.
  6. "Arizona State Tree" . Retrieved 2014-03-21.
  7. "Female Digger Bees | ASU - Ask A Biologist". Retrieved 2015-11-06.
  8. "GRIN Species records of Parkinsonia". Germplasm Resources Information Network. United States Department of Agriculture. Retrieved 2011-04-25.
  9. "Subordinate taxa of Parkinsonia L." TROPICOS. Missouri Botanical Garden. Retrieved 2010-02-11.
  10. "Parkinsonia". Integrated Taxonomic Information System . Retrieved 2011-04-25.