BugwoodWiki Article

Athel tamarisk
Tamarix aphylla (L.) Karst.


Tamarix aphylla is deciduous shrub that can grow up to 15 ft. (4.6 m) in height.
Leaves are small, scale-like, gray-green in color, and overlap along the stem. The bark is smooth and reddish on younger plants, turning brown and furrowed with age.
Small, white to pink flowers develop on 2 in. (5.1 cm) long spikes from March to September.
Fruits are tiny capsules that have a small tuft of hair.
Ecological Threat
Several species are considered invasive in the United States and distinguishing the species can often be difficult. Tamarix aphylla invades streambanks, sandbars, lake margins, wetlands, moist rangelands, and saline environments. It can crowd out native riparian species, diminish early successional habitat, and reduce water tables and interferes with hydrologic process. Tamarix aphylla is native to Eurasia and Africa and was introduced into the western United States as an ornamental in the early 1800s. It occurs throughout the western and central United States, but is most problematic in the Southwest.


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EDDMapS Distribution - This map is incomplete and is based only on current site and county level reports made by experts, herbaria, and literature. For more information, visit www.eddmaps.org

EDDMapS Distribution

State Invasive List - This map identifies those states that list this species on their invasive species list. For more information, visit Invasive.org

State Invasives List

Taxonomic Rank

Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Subclass: Dilleniidae
Order: Violales
Family: Tamaricaceae
Genus: Tamarix

Other System Links

Plants: TAAP
Bayer: TAAAP
GRIN: 36222
ITIS: 22306

Synonyms and Other Names

Other Common Names:
athel, saltcedar, tamarisk, tamarix


Category: Hardwood Trees
Category: Shrub or Subshrub