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Research and Conservation in Southern Sonora, Mexico

Nolina matapensis (palmita, sotol, tree beargrass)

Just as the English name implies, this is a beargrass that develops a trunk to 25 feet in height. They frequently have several twisted branches.

It is spottily distributed in eastern Sonora, primarily in oak woodland and extending into adjacent pine-oak forest and tropical deciduous forest.

This plant bears a striking resemblance to Dr. Seuss' truffula trees except that Nolina matapensis has only green foliage. (The Truffula Tree is a simple and elegant treatise on the basic principles of ecology.)


Nolina matapensis in cultivation at the Desert Museum. Photo: Mark Dimmitt

 

 

 

 

 

 



A depauperate Nolina matapensis northeast of Alamos, Sonora. Photo: S.A. Meyer