Form: A multi-stemmed, long-lived shrub.
Leaf retention: Evergreen.
Growth rate: Slow to moderate depending on water.
Mature Size: 6-8' high and wide.
Flowers: Male and female flowers appear on different plants. Male flowers are tiny, greenish-yellow,
and clustered. Female flowers are small, greenish, and usually solitary at leaf nodes.
Bloom: Early winter into spring, or spring into summer, depending on the local climate.
Fruit: With male plants present, an acorn-shaped, thin, fleshy capsule appears on female plants,
usually containing one large, dark brown seed.
Leaves: Dull green, oval to lance-shaped, in upward-pointing pairs.
Stems: No thorns. The dense branches are rigid, and somewhat irregular.
Roots: One to several very deep taproots, which may exceed 30' deep.
Wildlife: The leaves are browsed by large mammals, especially goats. The seeds are consumed
by some small mammals and large birds.
Toxic / Danger: The pollen is a mild allergen. The seed meal is toxic to some mammals. Humans
find the seeds edible, but poisonous in large quantities.
Origin: Southwestern North America.
Cultivation and Uses
USDA hardiness zones: 9-11. Flowers and terminal parts of the branches are damaged, and first year
seedlings are severely damaged, below 20°F.
Heat tolerant: Yes.
Drought tolerant: Yes.
Sun: Full sun. This plant grows leggy in shade.
Water once established: Monthly.
Soil: Well drained, pH 5.6-9.0 (acidic to highly alkaline). This plant is saline
Prune: To shape.
Propagation: Seed or cuttings.
Uses: Xeric garden, a hedge in very dry, hot regions. The seed contains an oily, indigestible,
Jojoba is one of two species in the Jojoba family (Simmondsiaceae). Another common name is
Goatnut. This plant should be used more widely as a hedge in the Southwest.
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Latest update: February, 2019.