MESCAL BEANS.... Mountain Laurel
Sophora secundiflora - Fabaceae, Bean Family
Small, evergreen tree, with dense, dark-green, glossy foliage.
Height: 25-35 feet.
Flowers: Fragrant, showy,
bluish-purple; early spring.
Fruit: Woody pods to 5-inch-long,
slightly constricted between the hard-
shelled, red seeds.
Foliage: Dark-green, glossy leaves.
Bark: Dark gray to black, with narrow
ridges and shallow fissures.
Growth rate: Slow to moderate.
Sun: Flowers best in full sun; some shade
Soil: Any; prefers limestone soils.
Drainage: Good to moderate,
Water: Low; once established-, does
poorly in wet areas; drought tolerant-,
tolerates some salt.
Maintenance: Webworms attack new
growth; fungal canker can cause stem
Propagation: Fresh seed, scarified
Wooded areas near resaca banks in
Attractive to bees and butterflies.
Red seeds made into
jewelry; seeds are poisonous to humans; leaves and seeds are poisonous to livestock; good luck to carry
a seed in your pocket. Very freeze-tolerant, one of the few plants that remained
green after a major hard freeze; spring blooms have a wonderful scent which some people describe as grape
bubblegum or Koolaid: young silver-velvet seed pods are very attractive in contrast to the glossy green leaves;
beautiful ornamental to include in a smaller yard, patio or courtyard.