Last night I talked with a fellow who needed to have a young mesquite removed due to its size. We talked about the problem trees in the neighborhood like eucalyptus, mesquite and palo Verde. This got me thinking about the Palo Verde and thought I would share a little about them.
The Palo Verde (our State tree) is a tree highly cultivated in Tucson only running second to the Mesquite Tree. It is here due to its ability to thrive in our soil at our elevation, also with green bark that can photosynthasize it is a great survivor in the desert. The Palo Verde is a Half standard branched head tree, meaning it grows a couple of feet then branches out with no central leader. The different variations may grow as a multi stemmed or full half standard.
There a 3 common species that I see in Tucson regularly. The Mexican Palo Verde being the least common. This variation grows like a tree reaching 40 feet with leaves that look like pine needles hanging 8 inches long. It usually grows a woody bark most times and is one of least eye appealing Palo Verdes and will shoot seedlings all over your yard. The 2 most common are the palo brea and the blue Palo Verde Tree. They reach a similar hight of 25 feet and leaf size is close at about 1 inch. The blue is much more likely to have a trunk that turns light brown with age. Both trees are short lived reaching only 20 to 40 years in age. The little leaf Palo Verde is also common in Tucson.
I like the Palo Verde Tree and often our Tree Service is out Tree Trimming them around Tucson. I like the smallest species you can buy maybe a little leafed Palo Verde. Being smaller helps manage a tree that is very heavy, dense and unpredictable. Talk to your nursery about different options and keep them away from your house.