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Rhamnaceae >>> Rhamnus crocea
Photographed in Rackensack Canyon, Maricopa Co., Arizona. July
SHRUB: Woody, evergreen shrub from one to a few
meters tall and in diameter. Fire-adapted - regrows after brush
LEAVES: Oval leaves with accuminate
serrations. Upper surface is shiny and the blades are often curled partially
shielding the undersurface.
FRUIT: Bright red berries with usu. two hard seeds. With the holly-like
leaves this makes for a very attractive plant, and indeed it has recieved
attention from horticulturists. Xerically adapted varieties are possible.
RANGE: A shrub of chaparral and ponderosa zones primarily, but in well
watered, partially shady canyons in the foothills of the Sonoran Desert it is
an occasional component. Taxonomists have recently elevated the Holly-leaf
Buckthorn subspecies to full species level: Rhamnus ilicifolia.
ARMED. The leaf spine tips are variably sharp. Unlike many buckthorns
the woody stems are mostly without stout thorns (occasionally a few).
FLOWERS: Smallish cream to yellow
flowers have four, pointed petals and four stamens.
Rhamnaceae -- Buckthorn Family
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