Iron Wood

Olneya tesota

Ironwood is considered a keystone species meaning it influences the distribution and abundance of other plant species. For example, it is a crucial “nurse” plant for the saguaro cactus providing it a safe site until it matures. It also enriches the soil providing understory plants a conducive habitat to grow in. Slow-growing and long-lived, estimates show that some ironwood tree can be up to 800 years old.