Wildlife, Animals, and Plants
VALUE AND USE
SPECIES: Chilopsis linearis | Desert Willow
WOOD PRODUCTS VALUE :
Desert willow is occasionally used for fence posts and fuel [14,46].
IMPORTANCE TO LIVESTOCK AND WILDLIFE :
Livestock: Livestock generally do not browse desert willow. It is
consumed only when other forage is scarce [18,46].
Wildlife: Various species of birds eat desert willow seeds [12,46].
Hummingbirds are attracted to the showy flowers and feed on the nectar
[3,12]. Mule deer eat small quantities of the leaves and fruit .
Desert willow is considered to be unpalatable to livestock and low in
palatability to wildlife . The presence of cyanogenic glycosides may
account for its low palatability . Following fire, however, tender
sprouts may be highly palatable. Two months after a July wildfire in
southern California, 55 percent of available desert willow sprouts were
browsed by mule deer, bighorn sheep, and cottontail rabbits, but this
use declined to about 1 percent within 1 year .
NUTRITIONAL VALUE :
The sucrose in desert willow nectar is a good energy source for bees and
COVER VALUE :
Desert willow provides nesting sites for desert songbirds and cover for
other wildlife species .
VALUE FOR REHABILITATION OF DISTURBED SITES :
Desert willow is used in soil stabilization plantings. It is often used
along highways and in well-drained barrow ditches . Numerous
cultivars are available, including 'Barranco', released by the Soil
Conservation Service , and 'White Storm', 'Dark Storm', 'Marfa
Lace', 'Alpine', and 'Tejas', released in 1988 from the Texas A&M
Research and Extension Center [36,39]. It is usually transplanted from
nursery stock. Removing competing vegetion around transplants and
irrigating during the first season after transplanting is recommended
. Methods for growing seedlings in a nursery have been discussed
[15,48]. Plants may be successfully propogated by both softwood and
hardwood cuttings [7,48].
OTHER USES AND VALUES :
Desert willow is cultivated as an ornamental because of its attractive
flowers . It has been used for roadside beautification, border
rows, screenings, and mass plantings . In the 1930's the Civilian
Conservation Corps planted desert willow in shelterbelts . Indians
used the wood to make bows and baskets [35,46].
MANAGEMENT CONSIDERATIONS :
Use of desert willow by livestock generally indicates overbrowsing or
overstocking of the range [45,48].
Related categories for Species: Chilopsis linearis
| Desert Willow