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Texas Kidneywood (native)
Texas Kidneywood (native)

Texas Kidneywood (native)

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Texas Kidneywood
Scientific Name:  Eysenhardtia texana

History/general species info:   Also known as Bee Brush, Vara Dulce, Palo Dulce. A yellowish-brown dye is obtained from the wood. It is used to color textiles. The heartwood is reddish-brown, streaked with black, and is hard, heavy and durable that takes a fine polish and finishes smoothly. Used for making small items, particularly handles of tools. Wood from a species closely related to Kidneywood historically was used to treat kidney and bladder ailments.

Characteristics:  Deciduous. Perennial. Non-spiney. Multi-trunk that can be pruned to a single trunk small tree. Open and airy structure with fragrant citrus smelling leaves and spiking white flowers. Flowers bloom late August to September. In the same family as acacias and mimosas, but it does not have their characteristic thorns.

FlowerWhite, fragrant

Planting / Care:  Full sun/Part Shade. Moderate growth in well-draining sand, loam, clay and caliche. Fragrant. Deer resistant. High heat tolerance. Drought tolerant. Can temporarily lose leaves during extreme drought. 

Size and Spacing:  10-20 feet tall.  10 foot spread. 

Wildlife: The nectar attracts butterflies and native bees.

Links:

Aggie Horticulture:
https://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/ornamentals/nativeshrubs/eysenhardtiatexan.htm

Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center: 
https://www.wildflower.org/plants/result.php?id_plant=EYTE

Texas Master Naturalists:
https://txmn.org/alamo/area-resources/natural-areas-and-linear-creekways-guide/texas-kidneywood/

Photo credits: Texas A&M