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Maclura pomifera (Rafinesque) C.K. Schneider. Osage-orange, Bow-wood, Bois-d'arc, Hedge-apple. Phen: Apr-Jun; Aug-Oct. Hab: Dry-mesic to mesic upland forests and woodlands, bottomland and riparian forests, stream banks, fencerows, old fields, pastures, prairies, roadsides, naturalized beyond its native range from extensive planting in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Dist: The native distribution is obscured by early introduction eastwards and spread from cultivation, probably native to an area from sw. AR and OK south to w. LA and e. and c. TX, but possibly native also in areas like the Black Belt of MS and AL.

ID notes: The large fruits are unmistakable: yellowish-green, grapefruit-sized, and wrinkled, reminiscent of a giant, spherical mulberry fruit.

Origin/Endemic status: Native

Other Comments: The wood is extremely heavy, fine-grained, a bright yellow-orange when fresh, but darkening with age, famous for making bows and also used in cabinetry.

Synonymy: = Ar, C, F, FNA3, G, GrPl, Il, K1, K3, K4, Mi, NcTx, NE, NY, Pa, RAB, Tn, Tx, Va, W, WH3, WV, Gardner et al (2017); = Maclura aurantiaca Nutt.; = Toxylon maclura Raf.; = Toxylon pomiferum Raf. ex Sarg. – S, S13

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Wetland Indicator Status:

  • Atlantic and Gulf Coastal Plain: FACU
  • Eastern Mountains and Piedmont: UPL
  • Great Plains: FACU
  • Midwest: FACU
  • Northcentral & Northeast: FACU

Heliophily: 6

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image of plant© Erik Danielson source | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Aidan Campos source | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Aidan Campos source | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© J.W. Hardin | Original Image ⭷
image of plant© Gary P. Fleming | Original Image ⭷

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