Sonoran Desert Naturalist >>> Field Guide >>> Sonoran Desert Flora >>> Rosaceae

Sonoran Desert Roses

Mostly woody shrubs and smaller trees. Some herbaceous perennial species. Few in Sonoran Desert proper, i.e. mostly in transition to chaparral or encinal vegetation. Alternate leaves. Numerous stamens. Usu. with compound ovary. Mostly without thorns.

Birch-leaf Mountain Mahogany

Cercocarpus betuloides

Desert Almond

Prunus fasciculata

Pen & Ink Illustration © by Mike Plagens

A chaparral zone large shrub that occasionally finds company with Sonoran Desert flora at the highest elevations, above 1000 m. Cream colored flowers fragrant. Leaves toothed along distal margin.   Detailed Description

Pen & Ink Illustration © by Mike Plagens

Shrub of the canyons and foothills in the Mojave Desert - occasionally along western frings of the Sonoran. Leaves clustered into fascicles. Fruit dry when mature. Cream colored flowers small.    Detailed Description

Arizona Rosewood

Vauquelinia californica


Coleogyne ramosissima

Photo © by Mike Plagens

Large, evergreen shrub in the foothills mostly above the Sonoran Desert proper. Dense clusters of small white flowers in mid to late spring. Detailed Description

Blackbrush, Coleogyne ramosissima. © by Mike Plagens

Absent from most of the Sonoran Desert - found on fringes of the Mojave Desert in California and nw AZ. Yellow flowers with numerous stamens. Twigs dark gray/brown.    Detailed Description

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Copyright Michael J. Plagens, 1999-2012