Arizona’s native mesquite, the Velvet Mesquite, is a cold hardy, heat loving large tree, reaching about 30 feet tall and wide. It can be fast growing when provided plenty of water, but if it starts growing too fast simply cut back. Suitable for landscapes in Tucson and Green Valley, the Velvet Mesquite offers filtered shade and sun in the winter after the leaves drop. This mesquite is often green for 9 months out of the year, have a short dormant period of only about 3 months. In mild winters it may stay green longer.
When selecting a nursery plant, choose one with multiple trunks for a wider spreading and more sculptural tree. Look for one without roots growing out of the bottom, and that is strong enough to stand up on its own without staking – a practice that is done without regards to whether or not the tree needs staking.
Reference: Mountain States Wholesale Nursery and Gregg Starr Nursery Plant Info Sheet, 1999.