Honey locust Facts

Honey locust Facts
Honey locust is a type of deciduous tree that belongs to the pea family. It can be found in South Central and Midwestern states of North America. Honey locust grows in sub-humid and humid climates, on the limestone, in areas along river drainage that provide full sun. People often plant honey locust in the urban areas because it provides partial shade (does not affect growth of plants beneath it) and tolerates drought and increased pollution of the air. Besides in ornamental purposes, honey locust is cultivated because of its high-quality wood.
Interesting Honey locust Facts:
Honey locust can reach from 66 to 100 feet in height. Entire tree (except ornamental varieties) is covered with sharp thorns.
Honey locust has dark grey or black bark that is deeply furrowed on the older trees.
Honey locust has dark green leaves that are bipinnate in young, and pinnate in older plants. Leaves are alternately arranged on the stem.
Honey locust changes the color of the leaves into golden yellow and eliminates them quickly at the beginning of the autumn.
Honey locust blooms in the spring. It produces scented creamy-colored flowers that attract insects responsible for the pollination.
Fruit of honey locust is aromatic pod. Immature pod is green colored. Ripe pod is long, twisted and reddish-brown colored. Black seed are embedded in the pulp inside the pod.
Honey locust can be propagated via seed and root cuttings.
Pods are important source of food for the squirrels, raccoons, possums and rabbits. Deer and domestic animals such as sheep, goats and cattle eat pods, green shoots and bark of young trees.
Grazing herbivores (deer, goats, sheep, cattle) facilitate dispersal of the seed (they eliminate seed via feces away from the mother plant). Digestive enzymes from their gut soften hard coat of seed and accelerate germination.
Pulp of honey locust has sugary taste, hence the name "honey" locust. Native Americans used pulp as sweetener and as a source of food.
Wood of honey locust is very dense and durable. It has application in the manufacture of fence posts, railroads, furniture, pallets and handles. Native Americans used wood of honey locust for the preparation of bowls.
Wood of honey locust can be used as a fuel in the form of firewood, or it can be transformed into ethanol that is used as biofuel (eco-friendly, less polluting type of fuel).
Honey locust was known as "Confederate Pin Tree" during the Second World War because needle-like thorns served as pins for the uniforms.
Honey locust is used in treatment of rheumatoid arthritis. Medical studies showed that compounds extracted from the honey locust have anti-tumor (prevent growth of cancer) properties.
Honey locust can survive up to 150 years in the wild, but it usually lives around 100 years.

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