Arizona State Tree

Yellow palo verde Fabaceae Parkinsonia (Cercidium) microphyllum

Leaf: Alternate, bipinnately compound, with only 2 major leaflets making it appear as a pair of pinnately compound leaves, each about inch long, green and short lived.

Flower: Loose clusters of bright yellow flowers with 5 lobes, entire flower inch across, appearing in spring and early summer.

Fruit: Two to 4 inch cylindrical legume swollen at seeds, sharply pointed at ends, light brown, matures in the summer, persist on the tree.

Twig: Slender to moderately stout, yellow-green, smooth, each short twig ending in a sharp point.

Bark: Initially smooth and yellow-green, later turning light brown and a bit scaly.

Form: Large shrub or small tree (up to 25 feet tall) with a crocked trunk and a wide spreading crown with many fine branches, leafless for much of the year.

Copyright 2003, Virginia Tech Forestry Department, all rights reserved.
Photos courtesy: Michael Aust, John Baitey, Ctaude L. Brown, Bruce Bongarten,
Susan D. Day, Edward C. Jensen, Richard E. Kreh, Larry H. McCormick, Alex X.
Niemiera, John A. Peterson, Oana Popescu, John R. Seiter, David W. Smith, Kim
C. Steiner, James E. Ward, Rodney E. Will, Shepard M. Zedaker.
Text written by: John R. Seiter, Edward C. Jensen, Or John A. Peterson