Guaiacum angustifolium - Zygophyllaceae, Caltrop Family
Small, many branched evergreen tree with coniferous appearance.
Height: 8-10 feet, can reach 20 feet.
Flowers: Showy and fragrant, blue to purple; March.
Fruit: Heart-shaped capsules, open in
autumn to reveal two vivid red-
coated, black, bean-like seeds.
Foliage: Evergreen, dark-green leaflets fold
at night and during heat of day.
Bark: Gray, fissured. rowth rate: Slow (in wild).
Sun: Partial shade to full sun.
Water: Low; drought tolerant.
Maintenance: Little needed.
Brush-grasslands; some relatively large specimens on resaca banks in
Cover, nest sites; flowers attract
bees; foliage important as deer and livestock browse.
Root bark used as soap (does not fade colors); root extracts used to
treat various diseases; good honey source; densest wood in Texas; hard, heavy and self-lubricating; fenceposts
and tool handles. Very difficult to propagate from seed or to successfully transplant from the wild; very small leaves lie close to
branches to form an evergreen, conifer look.