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Shrubs (Sub-shrubs)

Arabic Name

العوسج، العوشز

Latin Name

Lycium shawii , Solanaceae

English Name

Boxthorn, Desert-Thorn

Lycium shawii is called awsaj or shaz in Arabic, while the English common name is Boxthorn or Desert-Thorn. The shrub or small tree is distributed throughout the Arabian peninsula, southwest Africa and the Mediterranean basin. Lycium grows up to 4 metres high with a spread of 6 metres. It is densely branched and armed with tiny thorns. The small leaves are dark green. The 7-mm-broad, star-like white flowers appear in spring. After flowering, edible pea-size red berries develop. The plant attracts birds and bees. Lycium is adapted to desert conditions; and can withstand drought, frost, wind, grazing and heat. The demands on the soil are less; it grows on rocky clayey soil. Salt tolerance is very high. The shrub needs nearly no irrigation when once established, and has tap roots. Pruning will improve dense growth, and seeds and cuttings are used for propagation. Lycium can easily be found around Riadh. It is very useful for open country, as a coloniser, hillside plantation species, slope stabiliser and for environmental consolidation. In open landscape areas, the shrub is popular because it can be planted as a hedge or windbreak and also provides fodder for livestock. Natural planting themes such as rock or steppe gardens can be created with Lycium shawii planted as dominant, grouped plant or as a hedge. A relative of Boxthron, the Goji, became very popular, because it is very healthy, rich in vitamins and mineral nutrients.

General information

Family Name : Solanaceae
Origin: Mediterranean , Sub Tropical
Rainfall: Semi Arid , Very Arid
Propagation: Cuttings , Sowing and Pricking Out
Maintenance: Low

Environmental conditions

Urban Climate: Resistant
Desiccation: Resistant
Drought: Vulnerable
Irrigation: None
Salinity: High < 5,000 ppm
Hardiness Zones: -9°C

Plant shape

Vigour: Fast Growing
Height: 4 M
Expansion: 6 M
Foliage: Deciduous

Flower

Colour: White , Lilac
Size: 1.2 CM
Flowering Period: From Early March Till Late May

Fruit

Type Of Fruit: Berry
Size: 0.5 CM
Toxicity: Edible when processed , Poisonous

Location of Use :

Street Neighbour Planting , Open Country , Rock Garden , Hillside Planting , Hillside Stabilization , Park Planting , Steppe Garden , Hedge , Urban Area , Rowda Plant

Other choices :

Environmental Consolidation , Grouped Planting , Attractive Fruits , Attractive to Birds , Attractive to Bees , Attractive Flower , Screen , Shelter , Attractive Shape , Nativ in Riyadh , Dominant Plant , Medical Plant , Colonisers

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