The mesquite tree (Prosopis juliflora) belongs to the Mimosaceae (the Mimosa family). It is a small evergreen tree that is native to Mexico, South America and the Caribbean. It thrives in most soils including; sandy, rocky, poor and saline soils within an altitude range of 300-1900 m above sea level, and can reach 6-9 m in height. It has a thick rough gray-green bark that becomes scaly with age. The leaves are bi-pinnate compound, light green, with 12-20 leaflets. The minute cream-colored flowers bloom in long spikes at the ends of branches. The fruits are pods, 20-30 cm long.