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Marcus, Joseph A.
Lycium torreyi A. Gray
Torrey Wolfberry, Desert-thorn, Box-thorn, Squawberry, Rabbit-thorn, Tomatillo, Garambullo
USDA Symbol: LYTO
USDA Native Status: Native to U.S.
Spiny (sometimes nearly unarmed), spreading to sprawling shrub often forming thickets. To 3 meters in height. Spatulate to oblanceolate-elliptic to 5 cm in length, borne thickly on the branches and dehiscing during droughts to be quickly replaced after rains. Flowers 1 to 3 in a fascicle, greenish-lavender to white, with five corolla lobes. Berries are bright red and juicy.
Bloom InformationBloom Color:
White , Green , Violet Bloom Time:
Mar , Apr , May , Jun Bloom Notes:
Often flowers after fall rains. Fruit
is produced from June through September.
AZ , CA , NM , NV , TX , UT Native Distribution:
TX, NM, AZ, UT, NV, CA and MX. Native Habitat:
Mesquite, Saltbush, Tarbush and Creosotebush scrubland near arroyos and on alkalai sacatons. USDA Native Status: L48(N)
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Low
Light Requirement: Sun
Soil Moisture: Dry
Drought Tolerance: High
Heat Tolerant: yes
Soil Description: Fine, silty, alluvial soils.
Conditions Comments: West Texas from El Paso to Big Bend.
BenefitUse Wildlife: Berries are eaten by birds. Cover and habitat for birds and small mammals.
PropagationPropagation Material: Seeds , Semi-hardwood Cuttings
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Record Modified: 2009-04-08
Research By: Joe Marcus