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Elephant Tree

Bursera microphylla

Details & Attributes


Plant Type(s) Tree, perennial
Native to Arizona Yes!
Water Needs Low
Sun Full sun, partial shade
Pollinators Bees
Has Spines No
Size
In relative feet, width by height
15 × 15 (shorter and bushier in cooler climates)
Freeze Tolerant No
Flowering Season June-July
Flower Color Yellow
Minimum Temperature Range 30 °F
Leaf Description Leaves are compound with very small leaflets that are usually deep green
Fruit Grape-sized, hard; stays on the tree
Longevity
In years
30
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Range Map View SEINet Range Map
Elevation Range 500-3500 ft.
Ethnobotany Used for skin diseases, used to make coil baskets, and used ceremonially as a good luck charm.
Description Elephant tree is found in Arizona only in the hotter deserts of the western part of the state. Tolerant of extreme drought and heat this species can be put in extremely well draining soil in the ground or used as a potted specimen for a cacti and succulent collection. Brushing lightly against this plant will release a strong piney fragrance that reveals this plant's close evolutionary relationship with Frankincense and Myrrh.