Turpentine Broom

Kingdom Order Family Genus Species
Plantae Sapindales Rutaceae Thamnosma Thamnosma montana

  • Plant Type: Slow-growing, woody, perennial shrub.
  • Common Names: Turpentine Broom, Mojave Desert-rue, Cordoncillo.
  • Color: Purple
  • Flowering Seasons/Months: Early spring (March and April).
  • Deserts with Turpentine Broom: Deserts of the southwestern United States and northern Mexico, Mojave, and Sonoran.

Turpentine Broom Flower Characteristics

Turpentine Broom

Turpentine Broom is a shrub of the family Rutaceae. This species is native to the southwestern United States and northern Mexico deserts.

  • It is an upright plant that can grow to 2 feet. The stems of the Turpentine Broom are with resin glands.
  • The Turpentine Broom is often bare, without leaves. They are small and wither quickly.
  • The leaves of the Turpentine Broom are light-green and deciduous. These leaves appear with the flowers, but the leaves fall when the soil dries up.
  • The flowers of the Turpentine Broom are small in the intervals along the plant’s stem.
  • The petals have visible resin glands. The corollaWhat is corolla?A collective term referring to the petals of a flower. of the Turpentine Broom is funnelform or urceolate.

Cordoncillo

Turpentine Broom Facts

Mojave Desert Rue

  • Thamnosma montana is called the Turpentine Broom[1] because the stem quickly losses its leaves, making it look like a broom.
  • The Latin “montana” denotes mountains or from the mountains.
  • Many Native American[2] groups used Thamnosma Montanaas medicine, pest control, or a ceremonial drug.
  • When rubbed, the resin glands on Thamnosma montana flowers produce a strong “turpentine” aroma. Hence the name.
  • The caterpillars of the black swallowtail[3] (Papilio polyxenes coloro) eat only the turpentine broom. The black swallowtail butterfly can distinguish the turpentine broom from other plants by tapping the stems and the leaves with their feet.

Thamnosma Montana

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BioExplorer.net. (2022, October 02). Turpentine Broom. Bio Explorer. https://www.bioexplorer.net/plants/flowers/turpentine-broom/.
BioExplorer.net. "Turpentine Broom" Bio Explorer, 02 October 2022, https://www.bioexplorer.net/plants/flowers/turpentine-broom/.
BioExplorer.net. "Turpentine Broom" Bio Explorer, October 02 2022. https://www.bioexplorer.net/plants/flowers/turpentine-broom/.
Key References
  • [1]“15 best flowers and plants in the desert – The Mighty Earth”. Accessed September 11, 2022. Link.
  • [2]“Manually Fix”. Accessed September 11, 2022. Link.
  • [3]“Turpentine broom – Sunflower Family – Chinese Herbs Healing”. Accessed September 11, 2022. Link.

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