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Mimosa distachya

Mimosa distachya Cav.

Mexican Mimosa

Fabaceae (Pea family)


USDA Symbol: MIDI12

USDA Native Status: L48 (N)

Drought-deciduous, potentially arborescent shrubs attaining 4 m, with pallid annotinous and ffexuous terete, distantly or sparsely foliate young branches, either unarmed or randomly armed at or below nodes either with a solitary recurved, broad-based infrapetiolar aculeus 1-8 mm or occasionally also with 1-2 infrastipular ones, either glabrous throughout except for tomentulose axillary buds, or transiently pubemlent, or finely silky-pubemlent throughout, the foliage pale green or subglaucescent, the leaflets either plane or (in one var.) incipiently revolute, the loose or relatively compact spikes or spiciform racemes bome either solitary or to 4 together in the axil of coevally expanding lvs, the whole infforescence pseudoracemose only in praefforation. Stipules lance-subulate, linear-ligulate or setiform, (1-) 1.5-3.5 X 0.2-0.7 mm, 1-nerved or almost nerveless, becoming dry and fragile." (bibref: 1811).


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Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Shrub
Leaf Arrangement: Alternate
Leaf Complexity: Bipinnate
Size Notes: To about 4 meters.
Leaf: "Leafstalks (2-) 2.5-10 cm, the petiole (0.7-)1-3.5 cm, the interpinnal segments up to 5-20 (-26) mm, the ventral sulcus either continuous or occasionally bridged between pinna-pairs and minutely spiculate; pinnae 2-4 (-5) juga, the rachis of longer ones 6-35 mm; leaflets 3-6 (-7) juga, subequilong or distally accrescent, in outline oblong, obovate, or oblance-elliptic, obtuse mucronulate or apiculate, the larger ones 3.5-17 x 2-11 mm, 1.5-3 times as long as wide, all dorsally (2-) 3-4-nerved from pulvinule, the midrib slightly or considerably displaced, simple or pinnately 1-3-branched on each side, the inner posterior nerve expiring or brochidodrome beyond mid-blade, the outer ones much shorter." (bibref: 1811).
Flower: "Spikes or racemes 4.5-6.5 mm diam. without filaments, the peduncle and fforal axis together (1.5-) 2-9 cm, the pyriform flower buds either glabrous or thinly puberulent, the minute bracts caducous; pedicels at anthesis 0-0.8 mm (in fruit sometimes to 1.2 mm); flowers 5-merous 10-androus, all bisexual; calyx membranous, openly campanulate or turbinate- campanulate 0.4-1.4 mm, the rim either truncate or denticulate, the deltate teeth 0.1-0.3 mm; corolla turbinately vase-shaped 2.1-3 mm, the 1-nerved lobes ascending or at length recurved, 0.9-1.5 mm; filaments either white or pale pink, united at very base into a stemonozone, exserted 3-6 mm; ovary either glabrous or minutely puberulent laterally, sometimes becoming densely puberulent after fertilization." (bibref: 1811).
Fruit: "Pods to 15 per spike but commonly fewer, either stipitate or sessile, the stipe attaining 7 mm, the broad-linear, gently recurved body (13-) 17-60 X 5-8.5 m, (2-) 3-9 (-11)-seeded, the replum either undulately constricted between seeds or nearly straight, either smooth unarmed or hispidly setose, the papery green, later stramineous valves prominently umbonate or low-bullate over each seed, delicately venulose, either glabrous overall, or glabrous and minutely granular, or puberulent overall, and in addition often hispid with erect setaculei to 1-1.5 (-2) mm, when ripe breaking up into free-falling, at length individually dehiscent articles 4-8 mm long." (bibref: 1811).

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Pink , Purple
Bloom Time: May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep


Native Distribution: Arizona, Mexico, Columbia, Venezuela and the West Indies. (webref: 6).
Native Habitat: "On dry stony hillsides and along desert washes below 350 m, in thorn forest and with arborescent cacti." (bibref: 1811).

Web Reference

Webref 6 - Germplasm Resources Information Network - (GRIN) [Online Database] (2018) USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program, National Germplasm Resources Laboratory, Beltsville, Maryland.

Research Literature

Reslit 2886 - Legumes of the United States. IV. Mimosa (1971) Duane Isely

This information was provided by the Florida WIldflower Foundation.
Search More Titles in Research Literature

Additional resources

USDA: Find Mimosa distachya in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Mimosa distachya in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Mimosa distachya


Record Modified: 2020-12-07
Research By: JAM

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