Scientific: Senegalia greggii (formerly Acacia greggii)
Common: cat claw senna, cat claw acacia, Texas mimosa, tearblanket, una de gato
Family: Fabaceae (Leguminosae)
Origin: Northern Chihuahuan, Sonoran, and southern Mojave deserts. It occurs in southern and western Texas, southern New Mexico, southern and central Arizona, southern Nevada, extreme southwestern Utah, southeastern California, and northern Mexico.

Pronounciation: Sin-a-GAL-ee-a GREG-ee-i

Hardiness zones:
Sunset 12-13
USDA 9-10

Landscape Use: A seldom used native shrub that can be used in local urban landscapes as a large screen, background, desert accent, barrier, or a small multiple-trunk desert tree if trained and irrigated. Also, a great shrub for desert restoration projects or to create habitat for native birds and bees.

Form & Character: Deciduous shrub, open, airy, dry.

Growth Habit: Moderate grower to 4 to 20 feet in height; ultimate size and vigor of cat claw senna will depend on the amount of supplemental irrigation that it receives.

Foliage/texture: Small twice-pinnately compound leaves with hooked single stipular spine like a cat's claw; medium fine texture.

Flowers & fruits: Produces highly fragrant (musty) flowers in a terminal spike, 2.5 inches long, cream to yellow; fruit a twisted bean pod to 4 inches long.

Seasonal color: Brilliant flower display in late April to mid May.

Temperature: Tolerant of any temperature regimen that the desert climate can give (it is a desert native afterall).

Light: Full sun required, shade intolerant.

Soil: Tolerant

Watering: Give cat claw senna little to no irrigation once established. Use supplemental water to encourage rapid increases in growth and ultimate plant size.

Pruning: Prune only to train as multiple trunk small tree. Otherwise, use the withholding of irrigation to control growth rate and eventual size. Wear protective clothing when pruning as this well armed plant can fight back!

Propagation: Seed, hard seed coat necessitates a mechanical or chemical seed coat scarification treatment.

Disease and pests: None

Additional comments: Cat claw senna (acacia) is a nice accent plant when in flower, otherwise it is only marginally ornamental and is best used to occupy a nice discrete, filler, or background spot in a xeric or native landscape setting.

The specific epithet refers to botanist Josiah Gregg. S. greggii hybridizes in situ with S. berlandieri and is a small tree of many ethnobotanical uses including edible seed pods. A medicinal tea was made from the fruits, leaves or bark to relieve diarrhea, dysentery, or stomach ulcers. Bread meal was also made from grinding the fruit.