Native to the Colorado Desert in southern California, Arizona and northwestern Mexico, the Smoke Tree (Psorothamnus spinosus) has adapted to this harsh and dry habitat by growing long roots that tap into water deep underground.
To see photos of the Smoke Tree, visit the San Diego Natural History Museum’s San Diego County Plant Atlas. The dramatic-looking flowers of the Smoke Tree (Psorothamnus spinosus) appear to rise from the ground like a smoke cloud thus inspiring its common name. This desert tree draws attention to itself with its colorful purple flowers serving as a nesting site for numerous desert birds
PHOTO CREDIT: Jeannie Gregory, SDNHM
PHOTO CREDIT: Jim Melli, SDNHM