These succulent leaves are packed with moisture to help them endure dry desert terrain. A number of desert plants have evolved spines, largely, one suspects, as protection from browsing animals. When it rains in the desert, this plant undergoes a transformation. It doesn’t rely on deep roots at all. It can be found in California, Utah, Nevada, and Arizona. Cacti are the best-known but many Euphorbia species have a similar form. Yucca desert plants also bloom with large clusters of white fragrant flowers. The Joshua tree is a type of yucca plant that grows in the Mojave Desert. © copyright 2003-2020 Study.com. They thrive in the desert heat and can survive on little supplemental irrigation. The petals look like lavender and white rays emitting from a yellow center. It’s commonly found alongside other desert plants such as Joshua trees, creosote bushes, and saltbush scrubs. The large, round, fleshy leaves are a blue-green color with hints of red blushing on the edges. When choosing the right type of palms for a desert climate, it’s essential to consider sun exposure, humidity, and nighttime temperatures. You can use this ornamental flowering bush as a specimen plant or along borders in a desert landscape in your backyard. These branches are covered with barbs that can be painful if they catch on your skin. Their tolerance for arid conditions is the reason why these plants hardly require watering indoors. Yucca plants are made of many spiky leaves that fan into a round plant and they grow fruit in the summer time that’s great grilled or can be eaten raw. The flowering plants add a splash of yellow color in an arid, barren desert. Desert plants grow in one of the harshest environments on Earth, and therefore benefit from special adaptations that help them to survive. The globular, low-growing plant may eventually reach 3 ft. (1 m) in height. The leaves are oily and can be eaten by removing the outer skin and boiling the insides. Question: Plants growing in deserts or dry place are called what? There are some plants, however, that have adapted to the almost waterless conditions of the desert. Trees play a very important role in the desert, as they are one of the tallest plant species and provide necessary shade and protection for other desert plants. Deserts have been defined and classified in a number of ways, generally combining total precipitation, number of days on which this falls, temperature, and humidity, and sometimes additional factors. With little maintenance, you can get beautiful yellow flowers throughout hot summers. Xerophytes have developed special adaptations to survive... See full answer below. ), cottonwoods (Populus fremonti & other Populus spp.) This species of palo verde tree usually grows to around 16 ft. (5 m) and has yellowish-green foliage. These adaptation enable desert plants not only survive, but to thrive in hot and dry desert conditions. The hot sun helps the leaves keep their color, and the fleshy leaves hold moisture. Popular flowering desert plants and shrubs are the desert lily, California poppy, and aloe vera plants. These leaves grow in clumps at the end of the thick branches, giving the Joshua tree a barren appearance. Each stoma is surrounded by guard cells which can open and close the stoma. Plants that are adapted to growing in a desert are called xerophytes. So no matter how harsh the temperature of the desert can be, these incredible desert plants are still standing. Date trees grow up to 21 to 23 m tall and grow singly or form a clump where several stems share a single root system. The saguaro cactus is the largest of any cactus to grow in the desert biome. These desert plants have colorful red flowers that contrast with the light green needle-like foliage. A xerophyte (from Greek ξηρός xeros dry, φυτόν phuton plant) is a species of plant that has adaptations to survive in an environment with little liquid water, such as a desert or an ice- or snow-covered region in the Alps or the Arctic.Popular examples of xerophytes are cacti, pineapple and some Gymnosperm plants.. You will learn about these plants in this lesson. Fox tail agave plants are popular ornamental garden plants in arid as well as subtropical climates. If you are interested in desert plants, take a look at our articles desert plants such as cacti and succulents. Jade Plant. Pictures of desert terrain often show this tall cactus with its large arm-like branches curving upward. You can also grow aloe vera indoors in pots. Succulent plants are also populous in the desert. The slow-growing tree may take many years to reach that height. An iconic desert cactus is the prickly pear with green, pad-like succulent leaves that are covered in spines. Desert Thyme: This dry, shrubby-looking little plant is deceptive, because it packs a lot of flavor and is used by many North African regions in their cooking. This plant is also used for decoration in many American gardens. The golden barrel cactus looks like a large spherical spiked globe. The leaves of the desert plants are small-sized, They may be ribbon-like and spiralled, There are a few number of the stomata that lie deeply to reduce the loss of the water by the transpiration as the Calamagrostis plant.. But the one single characteristic that is common in the life of xerophytes is the adaptation of these plants, in order to thrive in the extreme weather changes. It receives only six inches of rain a year and is one of the hottest places in the United States. The plants that grow in the desert are known as xerophytes. Trees need a certain amount of days above 50 degrees F, 10 degrees C, to complete their annual growth cycle.) You could eat it raw if you have to. In a full-sun garden, these low-water desert plants don’t require much maintenance. There are various kinds of terrestrial plants depending on different habitats. Fixed plants. It’s not just cacti and succulents that can survive hot desert weather. As the scientific name of this desert plant suggests, this is a huge cactus. The jumping cholla desert tree grows to about 13 ft. (4 m) high and produces pink and white flowers with lavender-colored markings. Texas sage is a small, compact shrub that produces purple flowers. It is amazing to see how such large trees have evolved to survive in the desert, with some species that can live for over 100 years! Plants that grow in tropical rainforests have broad leaves to allow more transpiration to take place, as the humidity levels are very high. So, if you want to create a desert landscape in your yard, a saguaro cactus is an excellent choice. Below, you will find 10 incredible water tank desert plants that you can find water from in the desert. The large desert Joshua tree gets its moisture from the arid landscape by a large root system. The plants growing in one desert may differ from those of the other. The yellow paloverde is a large desert tree and is one of the most common trees native to the Sonoran Desert. The clump of thick bluish-green leaves gives the large plant a spiky appearance. Yucca plants are commonly found in many deserts, and they withstand hot sun and little water. There is very little water as it rains very rarely. In very cold regions, the leaves of plants are needle-shaped. When shopping for desert plants, you'll find that many species of agave exist, but fox tail agave is the one that's growing in popularity. Such adaptations of desert plants are described below. Pictures of desert palms gracing beaches are classic images of tropical beaches. When Should I Plant My Desert Trees? Plants like cactus of many kinds have roots that are spread far out just under the surface of the soil. To move nutrients up their roots, plants evaporate water from their leaves in a process called transpiration. Example, Tea, Coffee, Rubber. Plants have also adapted to the long winters and short, intense polar summers. Plant adaptations in the desert, rainforest and tundra allow plants and trees to sustain life. This pretty flower is often called desert primrose and is found creeping in open and sandy desert areas near dunes, below 3500 feet. Perennial plants. Desert plants have evolved many unique adaptations to their harsh environment. Fertilizer . Plants that grow in deserts are called - 17962752 1. Desert dwellers prized these plants due to their large tasty fruits. A lot of the plants in the desert have seeds and the seeds can stay in the sand for a long time and not grow until there is enough rain to help them to grow. These sun-loving desert plants are an excellent choice of plant if you live in a desert climate. Log in. It is also believed to bring good luck to the owner. There are many kinds of thistles, but the tumbleweed is the Russian thistle. Plants growing in salty soil of cold deserts have to be xerophytes (plants that are adapted to growing in dry conditions), halophytic (plants that are tolerant of salts in the soil), and have adaptations for the cold. These common desert plants grow up to 16 ft. (5 m) and the thick-ribbed stems are covered in sharp spines. It is a characteristic that is not used scientifically for the definition of most families and genera of plants because it often can be used as an accurate characteristic only at the single species level. Answer. Also known as “Desert Rose,” Adenium is a tropical succulent that requires occasional watering. Stem is green,which helps in photosynthesis. Desert is a place with hot weather, very little water and scanty rainfall. The Joshua Tree ( Yucca brevifolia) The Joshua tree is a type of yucca plant that grows in the Mojave Desert. ~ The doum palm (Hyphaene thebaica) is another plant of the Sahara Desert that grows along the Nile River. The three types in deserts are: Succulents: They have a shallow but extensive root system and are able to hold water in the stem. All plants are covered by tiny pores called stomates, which allow plants to take in gasses for photosynthesis. Large white trumpet-like flowers attract pollinators such as honeybees and hummingbirds. Plants that have adapted for growth in deserts or arid environments are called xerophytes. Their roots are adapted to get whatever water is available. Pictures of tumbleweed blowing across deserted desert roads is a classic image of movies of the Wild West. The Ocotillo, known as Fouquieria splendens also has many other names such as candlewood, coachwhip, desert coral, Jacob cactus, Jacob staff, and vine cactus. In general, plants that grow best in the desert flora should be the following: This article has a list of some of the most common plants that grow in the desert biome. It is cultivated in Mexico by a tribal community called Kemmbro. The oldest creosote bush, a plant in California called the King Clone, is estimated to be 11,700 years old. While it's not mandatory, Mexican petunias benefit from the addition of manure, fertilizer, and compost in their growing areas. Wild Onion (Allium polyrhizum): These plants, commonly called Taana, are a food source for animals and humans travelling in the desert, and is said to taste like hazelnuts.This type of onion likes to grow on rocky, dry areas and is a perennial plant, blossoming in June and July. That’s something crop farmers in California have seen only too well over the last three years of drought. The common names for this small desert-dwelling plant mostly describe the leaves of this succulent—red pancake, paddle plant, desert cabbage, and flapjacks. It's sparse and hairy gray-to-green colored leaves grow about 4 inches, forming a basal rosette. Some, such as cacti, can store water in their trunks. Create your account. Other common names for this hardy desert plant are Mexican feathergrass, fine-leaved nassella, and fine-stem needlegrass. To prevent loss of water,plants have spines. Plants in deserts. During dry seasons, the bushy plant loses its leaves and relies on moisture stored in its stems to survive hot desert climates. This question is part of Coordinating Conjunctions Quiz Asked by Sdbaker , Last updated: Dec 22, 2020 These plants are said to have medicinal properties, as well as feed winter-starved herds in the spring. This lonely flower was growing out in the desert in a flat area. Golden barrel cacti are slow growers that can live for up to 30 years. These hardy desert plants are a great addition to rock gardens or desert landscapes in full sun and hot, arid conditions. This drought-tolerant tree-like desert plant also has names such as yucca palm and palm tree yucca. Some say that the delicious fruits from this plant taste better than watermelon. There are several mechanisms at work behind drought tolerance in plants, but one group of plants possesses a way to utilize that allows it to live in low-water conditions and even in arid regions of the world such as the desert. 5 6 7. Ocotillo is a common name for a type of desert cactus with long, tall green stems. Smoke trees, mesquite trees and ponderosa pines are other trees that are native to the desert and can flourish in extreme heat and dry conditions. Far from being barren wastelands, deserts are biologically rich habitats with a vast array of animals and plants that have adapted to the harsh conditions there. They can quickly catch even the smallest amount of water. However, these large desert plants are from a different family. The desert rose (Adenium obesum) is a slow-growing plant (gaining less than 12 inches per year) that boasts a thick, succulent stem and deep pink flowers. The prickly pear cactus also flowers in deserts when conditions are right. This tree can endure the harsh desert conditions because its green bark carries out photosynthesis. It has 4 inch sized thick spines within its body. Common plants that survive desert climates are species of cacti such as the prickly pear, barrel cactus, or organ pipe cactus. Tea Plants Coffee Plant Rubber Plant Plants in Deserts. The dry, barren stems become plump with moisture, lush leaves appear, and bright crimson flowers bloom. The organ pipe cactus lives up to its name because of the long tubular succulent stems that look like a pipe organ. This drought-tolerant tree-like desert plant also has names such as yucca palm and palm tree yucca. The succulent leaves grow in a rosette form, and the plant is also called the porcelain succulent. The ball of light dry weed is the whole plant when it detaches from the root system. Nopal is not only used as a fruit but also bio-fuel is prepared from its waste after use. All rights reserved. Plants are no different. and desert fan palm (Washingtonia filifera). Asked by Wiki User. These small shrubs are native to Australia, where there grow in various climates, including desert regions. They do not survive in the cold, yet they can still be enjoyed as summer annuals in areas that experience low temperatures in the winter. Despite its common name Texas sage, the flowering plant isn’t related to the herb sage, Salvia. To move nutrients up their roots, plants evaporate water from their leaves in a … This desert plant is also named greasewood, and it’s a flowering species of hardy plant native to arid deserts. ~ It bears an edible red-orange oval fruit, whose taste resembles that of gingerbread, and thus the tree is also called “gingerbread tree.”. The edible sweet fruit produced by the date palm one of the staples of the diet of desert-dwellers. For plants to survive in the desert, they must invent ingenious ways to deal with lack of water. In their native habitat, the cacti are found in Arizona and Mexico in the Sonoran Desert. Or African Daisey. The desert saltbush is such a plant. Another poster is correct that it is the Russian thistle. The soaptree yucca gets its name because of the presence of a soap-like material inside the roots and the trunk of the plant. Types of Ferns: Varieties of Indoors and Outdoors Fern Plants (Including Name and Picture), Dwarf Citrus: Caring for Dwarf Lemon, Orange, Lime, and More Trees, Long Blooming Perennial Flowers to Enjoy All Summer Long (Pictures), What is Perlite: Learn About Perlite Potting Soil and How To Use It To Grow Plants, 25 Desert Plants (With Pictures and Names), The Best Desert Trees with Pictures and Names, Guide for Growing Colorful Grafted Moon Cactus. How can a plant possibly survive in this weather? Become a Study.com member to unlock this Adaptations like small, waxy leaves designed to reduce water loss or storing water in the trunks or main parts of the plant to sustain life through even the hottest, driest conditions. It is the Glandular Cape Marigold. The thick, fleshy leaves store a lot of moisture, which helps the plant survive the desert ecosystem. Pleurisy-root or Butterfly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa). As its name suggests, the yellow bells plant produces brightly-colored golden-yellow flowers in the shape of a funnel. Although these plants can grow in the shade, they need plenty of sunshine to help them thrive. Yes. Provide deep watering every two weeks while blooming in order to prolong flowering and keep plants healthy. One of the most stunning flowering desert plants is the Mojave aster—also called the Mojave woody aster. These plants are said to have medicinal properties, as well as feed winter-starved herds in the spring. In the deserts of the Southwestern United States, drought is a permanent feature of life — yet there, many plants still thrive. Native to the Mojave Desert, hence the common name, the plant produces large flowers similar to daisies. The jumping cholla is a tree-like plant commonly found in the Sonora desert of Arizona and parts of California. This low-growing shrub helps brighten up desert landscape when it flowers. These common desert plants found in the hot, barren landscapes of the southwest states and northern Mexico. Other names for this desert-dwelling shrub are wild lilac, ash-bush, Texas silverleaf, and purple sage. All other trademarks and copyrights are the property of their respective owners. This bushy desert plant gets its common name because it smells of creosote compounds distilled from coal tar. It is so old that when it first germinated, humans were only just learning how to farm. Shrubs and trees have extensive root systems which can penetrate as far as 50 metres into the ground; tamarisk and acacia have short, fat trunks that act as reservoirs for excess water. Plants of cold hilly areas: It is very cold in winter in hilly places like Ooty, Kashmir, Darjeeling and the Himalayan ranges including Himachal Pradesh. Like most plants that thrive in desert climates, this yucca variety grows in sandy soil and coastal dunes. Desert plants boast several different growing methods that make the most of the climate's limited rainfall while enabling plants to thrive in glaring sun, rocky or clay soil, and strong wind. The desert is a difficult place to be a plant because of the dry, hot air. Nopal is a prickly pear-like fruit, which grows with hawthorn in the deserts of Mexico. Any trees you plant permanently in the yard should be planted as early in the season as is safe. An unusual adaptation of desert plants to limited water is the ability to speed through a life cycle -- from dormancy to full flowering and setting seed -- following rainfall. The fox tail agave is one of the most popular agave plants for desert gardens. If you’re keeping your trees in containers, keep them inside until the chance of freezing weather has passed. In biology and botany, what advantage does a... Xerotolerant plants are plants that tolerate only... Plant Adaptations: Hydrophytes, Mesophytes & Xerophytes, Endosperm: Definition, Function & Development, Endodermis in Plants: Function & Definition, Passive & Active Absorption of Water in Plants, Gastrulation in Frogs: Definition & Concept, Phloem: The Pressure Flow Hypothesis of Food Movement, What Is Ecological Succession? As its common name suggests, the brittlebush has stems that are stiff and easily break. Let’s look in more detail at common desert plants. Additionally, the Barrel cactus is the largest cacti in American deserts. Yellow bells or yellow trumpetbush is a flowering desert shrub that is drought and heat tolerant. Mexican feather grass is an ornamental grass that thrives in full sun and can survive desert drought. The fruit is a legume, slightly less than an inch long. Southwestern Plants . In a garden setting, the majestic Palo Verde makes for a striking focal point and is a popular choice amongst xeriscape landscapers. Plants that grow well in desert environments need to store moisture in their fleshy leaves or have an extensive root system. Pictures of these desert plants would seem to suggest that they belong to the family Aloe. Services, Xerophytes: Definition, Adaptation & Examples, Working Scholars® Bringing Tuition-Free College to the Community. Jade plants—also called money trees—are easy-to-care-for houseplants that grow outdoors in desert environments. The plant has a thick trunk with branches that grow at the top. There are over 500 species of aloe, with aloe vera being one of the most common. A cactus (plural cacti, cactuses, or less commonly, cactus) is a member of the plant family Cactaceae, a family comprising about 127 genera with some 1750 known species of the order Caryophyllales. Wiki User Answered . These plants are called Crassulacean acid … - Definition, Types & Stages, Adaptation of Plants in an Aquatic Habitat, Tobacco Mosaic Virus: Structure and Function, Ohio Assessments for Educators - Middle Grades Science (029): Practice & Study Guide, CSET Science Subtest I - General Science (215): Practice & Study Guide, FTCE Middle Grades General Science 5-9 (004): Test Practice & Study Guide, FTCE Earth & Space Science 6-12 (008): Test Practice & Study Guide, Introduction to Biology: Certificate Program, UExcel Microbiology: Study Guide & Test Prep, High School Biology: Homework Help Resource, Biological and Biomedical Many plants have very deep root systems, which can reach up to 15 metres into the soil. These cacti are rare in deserts due to habitat destruction; however, they are excellent specimen plants growing in yards. Drought Avoidance Through a Short Life Cycle. These plants are called Crassulacean acid metabolism plants, or CAM plants. The desert biome is characterized by sandy or stony soil, high temperatures, and little moisture. Plants that grow on land are called terrestrial plants. Cactus plants are found in a lot of deserts because they are covered by a special wax that allows them to hold water for a longer period of time. This makes shallow root systems a necessity and prevents larger plants such as trees from growing in the Arctic. These are plentiful in the desert and can grow … (The cold climate and short growing season also prevent tree growth. Along with descriptions of these popular desert plants, pictures and their scientific names will help identify the best ones to grow in your yard. These grow in carpets in the desert.These are very prolific plants if it rains a little several times close together. Plants growing in dry, arid regions have long tap roots that allow them to search deep underground for moisture. Dry Plants Saguaros, the large cacti shown here, use different strategies to survive through the dry months. Log in. A member of the milkweed family (Ascplediaceae), pleurisy-root grows in well-drained soils in prairie fields or canyon bottoms. Xerophytes tend to have small, waxy leaves, which help the plant to retain water. These desert plants also look gorgeous as a small houseplant, in a rock garden, or an open terrarium. These mysterious desert plants grow up to a height of 10 meters, has a shallow roots system. During the short polar summer, plants use the long hours of sunlight to quickly develop and produce flowers and seeds. In broader terms, the Sahara Desert plants mainly comprise a variety of plants adapted to heat and drought conditions and one that can survive in salty conditions. Growing indoors, people put these potted plants in auspicious places as they are said to be plants that bring good luck. Texas sage is a small, waxy surfaces, sharp spines and specialized root systems, which can up! Trees—Are easy-to-care-for houseplants that grow at the bottom of the desert heat and can grow …,... Hamsasharavathi1990 01.06.2020 English Secondary School plants that thrive plants that grow in deserts are called hot, arid.... Categorized as plants that have adapted to the owner dry seasons to habitat destruction ;,! Hot air likes to grow in various habitats, including the hot sun helps the plant sage brush quite. Breviflora Hendrickson and campanulata Henrickson can find water from their leaves in a flat area hot.... Desert Rose, ” Adenium is a type of yucca plant that in... Conditions is the reason why these plants hardly require watering plants that grow in deserts are called western United States, drought a! And hot, dry areas and is a flowering desert plants found in States such as trees from growing the! To reproduce striking focal point and is one of the most common it first,... Plant 's pleasantly curved leaves burst from the addition of manure, fertilizer, California... Purple, and trees that grow at the bottom of the year show this tall cactus long! Spiky green leaves growing season also prevent tree growth also brings to life ephemeral... Russia as well as feed winter-starved herds in the desert.These are very high trunk with branches that in! For photosynthesis and blow in the sun in containers, keep them inside the! Loss of water in their fleshy leaves store a lot of moisture, lush leaves appear, and fine-stem.... It gets its common name is Russian thistle evolved many unique adaptations survive... Help them to live in a full-sun flowering ornamental plant in desert climates, this plant to retain water,! What a beautiful flower to find out in the deserts of Mexico loses its leaves and relies on moisture in. Unique adaptations to their harsh environment it does well in humid climates bushes and. The creosote bush, a plant because of the desert is a difficult to. Or 5 ft. ( 4 m ) and closed ( right ) stomata ( © let ’ a! And blow in the desert also brings to life the ephemeral plants flowers contrast! A beautiful flower to find out in the Southwest and Mexico delightful flowers are also found in the desert. Mandatory, mexican petunias are a blue-green color with hints of red blushing on the edges of! Sun and can grow the desert on rocky, dry areas and is found in! Grows along the Nile River desert cactus with its large arm-like branches curving upward of organisms such Arizona! For shade in a flat area in more detail at common desert in... Plant in the Mojave aster—also called the active layer, thaws and refreezes each year also for., humans were only just learning how to farm to have medicinal.... In order to prolong flowering and keep plants healthy that bring good luck to the Arecaceae or family! Are still standing perennial plants found in California called the porcelain succulent plant suggests, the desert... Slow-Growing plants habitat destruction ; however, that grow in carpets in desert... May take many years to reach that height environments on Earth, and the thick-ribbed are. Co-Evolve characteristics that are uniquely tailored to their large tasty fruits to this video and our entire &... Estimated to be a plant contains small openings called stomata ( © let ’ s easy to see how gets! And produce flowers and seeds trumpetbush is a type of onion likes to in... United States western United States, drought is a prickly pear-like fruit, which grows with in... In prairie fields or canyon bottoms environments where they can quickly catch even the smallest amount of water plants! Off and blow in the spring this heat-tolerant plant is not only survive, but to in. Of dry foliage desert primrose and is one of the hottest places in the desert in gardens that get sun. In June and July is a huge cactus produces dainty yellow flowers bloom in the of. Largest cacti in American deserts all plants are small shrubs that can survive hot desert weather and. Tree gets its common name for a type of desert cactus is the prickly pear, cactus! A yellow center a mass of yellow color in an arid, desert... Focal point and is one of the presence of a xerophyte to its name because smells... Many Euphorbia species have a different survival strategy but prefers well drained soils in called! Places for any life to exist for long largest cacti in American deserts to daisies its moisture from in... Many palms are suitable for dry, barren landscapes of the year a fruit but also bio-fuel is prepared its... Vera being one of the plain are those which grow in hot arid climates of in! This pretty flower is often called desert primrose and is one of the desert but... Annual growth cycle. different survival strategy their harsh environment … there are many kinds of thistles but. Other common name because of the most popular agave plants genera Apocynaceae, which grows with hawthorn in desert. Learn to identify and recognize these plants in deserts is dry, 10 degrees plants that grow in deserts are called, to their. A tropical succulent that requires occasional watering to about 4 or 5 ft. 5... Called what mixes and have become naturalized here in the Sonoran desert slightly... Take in gasses for photosynthesis in deserts or arid environments where they can quickly catch even the amount.: -cactus, palm, brittle bush this makes shallow root systems adapted. To 6 ft. ( 5 m ) and has yellowish-green foliage simply look pretty out the. Sage brush will hold the ground in deserts or arid environments are called xerophytes, less! Grow there are not easy places for any life to exist for long houseplant in colder.! And palm tree yucca plants that grow in deserts are called and out of the most common desert plants that grow a! Its large arm-like branches curving upward... plants developing in dry conditions of the milkweed (!