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Mesquite is the common name for several species of small trees. They are native to the southwestern United States and Mexico (except for creeping mesquite, which is invasive in southern California). Mesquite is one of the most expensive types of lumber in the U.S. A mature tree can be milled and sold for thousands of dollars. It was a very popular type of wood used by early Spaniards to build ships; but is now used most commonly for high end rustic furniture and cabinets. Scraps and small pieces are used commonly as wood for cooking in southern states; and also brings a premium on the market.

The Tamaulipan mezquital ecoregion, in the deserts and xeric shrublands biome, is located in the southern United States and northeastern Mexico. It covers an area of 141,500 km2 (54,600 sq mi), encompassing a portion of the Gulf Coastal Plain in southern Texas, northern Tamaulipas, northeastern Coahuila, and part of Nuevo León

This tree blooms from spring to summer.


The English word mesquite is borrowed from the Spanish word mezquite, which in turn was borrowed from the Nāhuatl term mizquitl.[1][2][3]

As an introduced and invasive species[edit]

Honey mesquite has been introduced to parts of Africa, Asia, and Australia and is considered by the World Conservation Union as one of the world's most problematic invasive species.[4]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Entry for mizquitl in the A Nahuatl–English Dictionary and Concordance to the Cantares Mexicanos by John Bierhorst (p. 216).
  2. ^ Entry for mesquite in the Diccionario de la lengua española (Real Academia Española).
  3. ^ Entry for mesquite in the Online Etymology Dictionary.
  4. ^ "100 of the World's Worst Invasive Alien Species" (PDF). Retrieved 2009-11-27. 
  5. ^ Honey mesquite in Texas

External links[edit]