Tamarix

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Tamarix

 

a genus of plants of the family Tamaricaceae. They are bushes or trees 6–10 m high, with slender long runners. The leaves are small, usually in the form of scales, and bluish or grayish in color. The blossoms are small; white rose, or violet; and gathered into long brushes. The fruit is a pod, with small seeds that are either bare or have a tuft of spikes on the end.

Tamarix love light, are drought resistant, and grow rapidly without requiring special soils; many types are salt tolerant. They multiply through seeds, root shoots, and cuttings and readily form hybrid varieties. There are 54 genera in the deserts and semiarid regions and steppes of southern Europe, Africa, and Asia as far as India; in the USSR there are 24 varieties. They grow wild in the floodplains and valleys of rivers, in tugaic forests, in wormwood and halophyte thickets, on lake shores, and the seashores of Middle Asia. Kazakhstan, the Caucasus, and the southern European part of the USSR. Tamarix are used for fuel, for plaiting various articles, and for sand and forest-land erosion prevention. They are good nectar plants. Domestic animals eat the young branches. Tamarix also show promise as decorative plants.

REFERENCES

Rusanov, F. N. Sredneaziatskie tamariksy. Tashkent, 1949.
Baum, B. Monographic Revision of the Genus Tamarix. Jerusalem, 1966.

S. K. CHEREPANOV