Screwbean Mesquite grows up to 20 feet in height at elevations below 4,000 feet. Similar to Honey Mesquite, Screwbean branches are twisted and spiny with bark growing in long, fibrous strips. Small yellow flowers grow in crowded clusters with tightly coiled spiral pods on stalks.
This tree is traditionally used for firewood or to make war clubs. The fibrous roots are shredded for tools and clothing such as cradles, baskets, and women’s dresses. The bean pods are regularly eaten and stored as winter food, crushed for tea, or even chewed like candy.