Mesquite

Prosopis spp
Family: Mimosaceae

Growth Habit: Usually grows as a single stem with a spreading canopy but can sometimes grow as smaller multi-stemmed trees with branches drooping to the ground. Mesquite has fern-like leaves.

Type of Plant: A thorny tree, which can grow up to 15m in height.

Flowers: Small greenish-cream, Lamb’s tails flowers that grow near the end of branches in wattle-like spikes 5-8cm long.

Fruit/Seed: Seeds are enclosed in 10-20cm long straw or purplish pods. 5-20 hards seeds per pod which can lay dormant for years.

Dispersal: Mesquite is mainly spread by animals digesting the pods and depositing the seeds.

Distribution: Mesquite populations are mainly found in central &endash;western Queensland. It has spread along waterways, flood plains, and roadsides and in horse paddocks near homesteads.

Status: Mesquite is a Weed of National Significance.

Weed Impact:

  • Dense impenetrable thickets
  • Aggressive competitor
  • Interfere with mustering
  • Blocks access to water
  • Sharp thorns injure and puncture vehicle tyres

Mesquite is also known as algaroba, Cloncurry prickle bush and Quilpie algaroba.

Information referenced from “Queensland Government, Department of Natural Resources Pest Fact No PP37.”