Prosopis pallida (Humb. & Bonpl. ex Willd.) Kunth
kiawe, mesquite, algaroba
Mimosaceae

This deciduous, thorny tree grows up to 20 m tall. It overshadows other vegetation but also desiccates an area by using all available water. Deep root systems tap ground-water. There is no known disseminator of the seeds but mesquite was planted in arid areas for shade and reforestation. The pods were used extensively for cattle fodder, resulting in further dissemination or intensification of stands. This species is generally killed by intense fires, although a small proportion of the trees will survive if the bases are partially protected. It has not been evaluated for biological control. It has many uses (Simpson 1977) and is locally favored by bee-keepers.

The plant is found in arid regions on all islands between sea level and 700 m. In dry areas dense populations are found over subterranean water courses.


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