Cercidium floridum
blue palo verde

Fabaceae (pea family)
California, Mexico
Cercidium floridum leaves and flowers. John Rawlings, 16 Jun 2005

This is a small summer-deciduous tree of the Sonoran desert with just a few very small leaflets, showy yellow flowers, and 3-inch long pods. A palo verde might be expected to be green, but in this case the bark is bluish green; the intricate structure of the branches lends interest to its appearance. A specimen used to be seen in the inside courtyard at the Cantor Center, but was not present in 2015.

Name derivation: Cercidium – from the Greek kerkidion, a weaver’s shuttle, and descriptive of the woody fruits; floridum/floridus – either (1) free flowering, producing abundant flowers; or (2) bright. From California Plant Names.

About this Entry: The main text of this entry is from the book Trees of Stanford and Environs, by Ronald Bracewell, published 2005. Cantor location removal noted Jan 2018 (SP).