Prosopis pallida is a species of mesquite tree. It has the common names kiawe, huarango and American carob, as well as "bayahonda" (a generic term for Prosopis) and "algarrobo blanco" (usually used for Prosopis alba). It is a thorny legume, native to Colombia, Ecuador and Peru, particularly drier areas near the coast. While threatened in its native habitat, it is considered an invasive species in many other places.
The kiawe is a spreading bush or moderately sized tree, bearing spines, spikes of greenish-yellow flowers, and long pods filled with small brown seeds. It is a successful invasive species due to its ability to reproduce in two ways: production of large numbers of easily dispersed seeds, and suckering to create thick monotypic stands that shade out nearby competing plants. It survives well in dry environments due to a long taproot which can reach deep watertables. It is so efficient at extracting moisture from soil that it can kill nearby plants by depriving them of water, as well as by shading them out. It can be found in areas where other plants do not grow, such as sandy, dry, degraded slopes, salty soils, disturbed areas, and rocky cliffs.
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