Search for native plants by scientific name, common name or family. If you are not sure what you are looking for, try the Combination Search or our Recommended Species lists.
Search native plant database:
Zanthoxylum fagara (L.) Sarg.
Lime prickly ash, Colima
USDA Symbol: ZAFA
USDA Native Status: L48 (N)
Evergreen shrub or small tree with spreading rounded crown, often with a leaning trunk; aromatic, spiny, with tiny gland-dots on foliage, flowers, and fruit.
The powdered bark and leaves have a sharp taste and have been used also as a spice. The crushed foliage has an odor of limes, as the common names suggest.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Tree Flower:
Brown Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Yellow , Green
Bloom Time: Jan , Feb , Mar , Apr , May , Jun
, TX Native Distribution:
Central and S. Florida, Florida Keys, and S. Texas; also N. Mexico; to 500 (152 m). Native Habitat:
Chaparral & brush country
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Low
Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Dry
Soil Description: Sandy, Sandy Loam, Medium Loam, Clay Loam, Clay
Aromatic, Fruits ornamental Use Wildlife:
Browse, Nectar-insects, Cover, Nesting site, Fruit-birds Use Food:
is edible, with a lemon zest taste that first tingles, then numbs in the mouth, like the Chinese culinary ingredient, Szechuan pepper, also a Zanthoxylum
species. Dried, ground leaves are sometimes used as a spice and have a similar taste and effect. Use Medicinal:
All visible plant parts have the ability to numb the mouth in high amounts, and in small amounts cause a refreshing tingling, which has led to this Zanthoxylum
species being a common ingredient in natural toothpastes and tooth powders, usually identified as Prickly Ash. It is also used to numb mouth pain, with the bark
being most commonly employed. Conspicuous Flowers:
Butterflies and Moths of North America (BAMONA)
is a larval host and/or nectar source for:
National Wetland Indicator Status
|Status:|| FACU || FAC |
This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1
(Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here
for map of regions.
Wildflower Center Seed BankLBJWC-1060
Collected 2007-07-09 in Cameron County by Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
Record Last Modified: 2010-04-19
Research By: TWC Staff