Dalea frutescens

Accession Count: 44
Common Name: black dalea
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Family Name: Fabaceae
Botanical Name: Dalea frutescens
Family Synonyms: Leguminosae
Sub Species:
Characteristics: Dalea frutescens is a deciduous shrub with alternate, odd-pinnate, and dark green leaves.
This thorn-less shrub can grow up to three feet tall. The stems of this shrub are grey to light brown. The leafs that bear twigs are thin reddish-brown. The leaves are one inch long and divide into many pairs of small leaflets, up to eight to be precises. The flowers are form in dense heads or grow a top of the ends of branches. They bloom small purple flower in dense heads that can grow at the apex of the branches (3). 
Compound: Dal fru
Geographic Origin: Southern US
Ecozone Origin: Nearctic
Biome Origin:
Natural History:
 The D. frutescens  is native to the Southern USA . This plant was disturbed from southern and western Oklahoma, central Texas west to New Mexico and south into Chihuahua, Coahuila, and south to Nuevo León, Chihuahua, Mexico (2).

Cultivation Notes: Dalea frutescens is a hardy shrub, but is mostly bare of leaves in the winter. With supplemental waterings during the growing season, and with severe pruning in the late winter, the black dalea will grow fuller and flower more. Fares best when planted in fully sunny locations. D. frutescens is a moderately fast growing shrub.
Ethnobotany: This plant does well in extremely cold or hot conditions (4). The main use that humans use this plant is for erosion control on rocky slopes or in areas of reflected heat (4). Is used as ornamental because its high tolerance for drought and heat (5). Both bees and butterflies are attracted to this plant (5). The Plant Database, also states that rabbits and deer will eat from this plant.

Height: 0 - 5 feet
Width: 0 - 5 feet
Growth Rate: Fast Growing
Grow Season: Fall
Flower Season: Summer
Color: Purple
Function: Screen
Spread: Non-spreading
Allergen: Non-allergenic
Invasive: Benign
Toxicity: Benign
Hardy: Hardy
Water Use: Low water Use

  1. Starr, Greg. Starr Nursery. Personal Communication.
  2. public.asu.edu
  3. wildflower.org. Retrieved January 15, 2019.
  4. The Weekly Plant: Daleas. (n.d.). Retrieved October 17, 2018, from http://www.bloomingatacademyvillage.org/the-weekly-plant-daleas/
  5. Plant Database. (n.d.). Retrieved October 17, 2018, from https://www.wildflower.org/plants/result.php?id_plant=dafr2

Dalea frutescens