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Prosopis tamarugo
Prosopis tamarugo.jpg
Tamarugo tree
Conservation status
Scientific classification
P. tamarugo
Binomial name
Prosopis tamarugo

Prosopis tamarugo, commonly known as tamarugo, is a species of flowering tree in the pea family, Fabaceae. It is found only in the dry northern regions of Chile.


Prosopis tamarugo are trees that could grow up to 30 m (98 ft) tall but usually they are, on average, 15 m (49 ft) tall and the trunk is 50–80 cm (20–31 in) wide. The young branches have spines. Flowers grow together in inflorescences and their pollination is made by bees.

Where it grows

The plant grows only in the Pampa del Tamarugal, some 70 km (43 mi) east of the city of Iquique.

The Pampa del Tamarugal is a plain between 19°33' S and 21°50' S, and an altitude from 300 to 1,200 km (190 to 750 mi).

Even if the Pampa del Tamarugal is very dry, the Prosopis tamarugo can use the relatively shallow ground water.


The wood and dry leaves of Prosopis tamarugo are used as firewood; the wood is also used for lumber. Leaves and fruits are used as food to animals, mainly to ruminants as cattle, sheep and goats.

Fruits are sweet and people can eat them.


See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Prosopis tamarugo para niños

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