Random Plant: Texas madrone

texasmadrone1

Texas madrone (Arbutus texana or A. xalapensis var. texana, Ericaceae) photographed 02/12/2014 at Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas.

Clinging to life in the arid Chihuahuan Desert, Texas madrone (Arbutus texana or A. xalapensis var. texana, Ericaceae) is a native of Texas, New Mexico, and Mexico. These trees survive in pockets of relative shade and moisture along canyons and protected slopes where they can extract enough water to attain their respectable size.

texasmadrone2

Texas madrone (Arbutus texana or A. xalapensis var. texana, Ericaceae) photographed 02/12/2014 at Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas.

Texas madrones are broadleaf evergreens, and even in February these plants appear lush among the harsh desert landscapes. The dark green foliage is contrasted by the reddish bark that makes them stand out among their relatively drab surroundings.

texasmadrone3

Texas madrone (Arbutus texana or A. xalapensis var. texana, Ericaceae) photographed 02/12/2014 at Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas.

In the spring these trees produce clusters of lantern-shaped, whitish-pink flowers that give way to red berries later in the year. Their intriguing appearance makes them ideal for use as an ornamental throughout the south.

Advertisements

About Jeremy Sell

Science and nature nerd.
This entry was posted in Botany, National Parks, Random Plant and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s