The Littleleaf Palo Verde, also called the Foothills Palo Verde, is a small native tree to the Tucson area. Like other Palo verdes, the green bark allows the tree to conduct photosynthesis even when the tree is leafless. Most desert native trees are both drought and cold deciduous, conserving both water and energy.
Use the Littleleaf Palo Verde in desert landscaping as either a tree, or if not pruned, a large shrub. This is a slow growing tree, but will pick up the pace if you provide it supplemental water, especially during the hot months.
Littleleaf Palo Verde and the Sahuaro are considered “indicator” plants, as when growing in a natural environment it usually “indicates” that citrus will grow well there too. This is not a fail-safe assumption, since the hard freeze of 2010 hit citrus trees hard no matter where they were planted.
Reference: Mountain States Wholesale Nursery and Gregg Starr Nursery Plant Info Sheet, 1999.