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Healthy Harvesters

Foothills Palo Verde Tree Cercidium microphyllum

Foothills Palo Verde Tree Cercidium microphyllum

Regular price $29.99 USD
Regular price Sale price $29.99 USD
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Foothills Palo Verde Tree Cercidium microphyllum

Drought-deciduous shrub or small tree, slow-growing, to 25 ft (7.6 m) tall, about half or more wide, irregular shape, often multi-stemmed and low branched, spiny, ascending and spreading branches, trunk may reach 0.3 m in diameter, bark is smooth, thin, greenish and photosynthetic.  

Leaves alternate, pinnately compound (even), 3-6.5 cm long; leaflets minute, yellow-green, in pairs (leafless most of the year).  Flowers usually cream-white, small (about 12 mm), in 3 cm long clusters.  Fruits 4-8 cm long flat pods, often ending in a spine, 1-5 seeds (edible when young and green), constrictions between the seeds.


Foothill palo verde trees should be planted in full or reflected sun and in soil with good drainage. This tree requires substantial pruning in the early stages to develop a “walk under” canopy. Prune only in warm weather. Cold weather pruning causes its limbs to die back and may introduce infection. Water young trees weekly in the summer; monthly in winter. Once established, blue palo verde trees survive on low amounts of moisture. Water established blue palo verde only during periods of extended dry weather. Supplemental irrigation will greatly increase growth rate and canopy density.

Edible Features of Palo Verde Trees

Palo Verde produce both edible flowers and seeds. The pods will dry in early summer. The pods can be collected either before or after the pods dry.

The Palo Verde has edible seeds that when immature, are edible raw, but can also be blanched and then can be pureed, frozen, canned, brined, fermented, or eaten in salads. Mature seeds can be toasted and ground into flour used for many things. Palo Verde beans are 41% protein.

Add water to the flour from the toasted seed to make Pinole, a thick porridge.

If harvested green taste test the few seeds to be sure they are sweet. If they are chalky, stop harvesting them as you have missed the early window. But don't despair. Just wait until the beans have ripened and harvest when they are dry.

The tree is currently growing in a one gallon container, but will be shipped with the roots wrapped in damp paper towels and with plastic and ready to plant upon arrival. The tree will be between 2 ft. - 3 ft. in height. Planting guidelines will also be included.We are a full service licensed plant nursery (B2915001).

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