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Creosote Bush, Gobernadora
Scientific Name: Larrea tridentata (Sesse & Moio ex DC.) Coville
Synonym: Larrea divaricata, Covillea divaricata, Zygophyllum tridentatum
Family: Zygophyllaceae
Creosote Bush, Gobernadora (Larrea  tridentata) Recommended Temperature Zone:
sunset: 10-13,19
USDA: 7-11

Frost Tolerance: Hardy to 0F (-18C)

Heat Tolerance: Excellent

Sun Exposure: Full sun

Origin: Southwestern USA, south to central Mexico, southern South America

Growth Habits: Straggly evergreen shrub, slowly growing to 6-8 feet tall (2 m), 6 feet wide (1.8 m); alternate leaves with 2 leaflets, 0.5 to 1 inch long (12-25 mm), with a creosote fragrance when wet

Watering Needs: Can survive without any added water, with some water it takes a rounded, denser shape

Propagation: Seeds, transplanting of existing plant is difficult, as is growing it from seed.


The secretion on the leaves, give them a varnished look. It is responsible for the creosote smell, particularly when wet. The Creosote Bush also release herbicides that prevent most plants to grow below it.
Larrea divaricata, here considered a synonym, is the name given to the South American members of the species.

Creosote Bush, Gobernadora (Larrea  tridentata)

Creosote Bush, Gobernadora (Larrea  tridentata)

Blooming Habits:
Large number of small yellow flowers, up to 0.8 inch wide (2 cm) mostly in spring, followed by a silvery, fuzzy 5-celled seed pod, 0.25 inch in diameter (6 mm).

Fruiting Habits:


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Desert-Tropicals is dedicated to provide gardening advice, gardening ideas, and information about flower of all kind for landscape and collections. We try to check carefully the identification of the plants on the illustrations as well as the other information from the page, but occasionally errors do occur. if you notice anything that needs to be changed please contact us. Thanks.

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