Trees With Thorns: The Beauty in the Danger

By Tree Expert Codey Stout
Published On

There is something undeniably beautiful about trees with thorns. The contradiction between the danger they pose and their stunning appearance has an appeal to it unlike anything else.

Many people are afraid of them, but once you learn to appreciate their power, you will see that they are one of nature’s most amazing creations. In this guide, we will discuss different types of trees with thorns, as well their dangers.

7 Types of Trees With Thorns

Trees with thorns are not as rare as you might think. In fact, there are over two hundred species of trees that have some type of thorn. Here are seven examples:

1. Acacia (Vachellia)

The acacia tree is a beautiful and deadly plant. It is native to Africa and Asia, and it has been introduced to other parts of the world as well. The acacia tree is a popular ornamental plant, but it is also known for its sharp thorns.

These thorns can be up to four inches long, and they are hollow. The acacia tree is also known for its toxic leaves and pods. The leaves of the acacia tree contain cyanide, which is poisonous to humans and animals. The pods of the acacia tree are also poisonous, and they contain a compound called cardiotoxin.

2. Bougainvillea

Bougainvillea is a genus of flowering plants native to southern North America. The flowers are small and white, but the plant is covered in colorful bracts that can be pink, purple, red, or orange.

Bougainvillea is a popular tropical landscaping plant because it is drought-tolerant, and grows quickly. The downside to this plant is that its thorns are sharp and can cause injury.

3. Cactus (Opuntia)

There are over two hundred species of cactus, and they are all native to the Americas. Cacti are adapted to desert conditions, and can store water in their stems.

Cacti have sharp spines that protect them from predators and help them retain moisture. The spines of some cactus species can be up to four inches long.

While cacti are beautiful plants, their sharp spines can cause serious injury. It is important to be careful when handling cacti, and to wear gloves and long sleeves if you are going to be around them.

Cactus spines can also become stuck in your skin, and they can be difficult to remove. If you are pricked by a cactus spine, try to avoid touching the area, and wait for the spine to fall out on its own.

4. Chickasaw plum (Prunus angustifolia)

The Chickasaw plum is a native plum to the southeastern United States. The tree produces small tart fruits that are popular with birds and other wildlife. The fruit is also used in jams and jellies.

Chickasaw plum trees have thorns on their branches, which can make them difficult to handle. If you are pruning a Chickasaw plum tree, be sure to wear gloves and long sleeves to protect your skin.

The Chickasaw plum is a beautiful tree that can add interest to any landscape. The thorns on the branches make the tree look dangerous, but the small tart fruits are actually quite delicious.

5. Pyracantha (Firethorn)

Pyracantha is a genus of large, evergreen shrubs with white, pink, or red flowers. They are native to Europe, Asia, and North America. Pyracantha is also known as a firethorn for its fiery-red thorns.

Pyracantha is a popular landscaping plant because of its dense growth habit, and its ability to produce a hedge or screen. It is also used as an ornamental plant in gardens and parks. Be careful when handling this plant however, as the thorns can cause puncture wounds.

6. Hawthorn (Crataegus)

The hawthorn is a flowering shrub or small tree that is part of the rose family. It is native to the northern hemisphere, and can be found in Europe, Asia, and North America. The hawthorn has sharp thorns that grow along its branches.

The flowers are white or pink and bloom in the springtime. The berries are red and ripen in the fall. The hawthorn is a beautiful tree that is also dangerous. The thorns can cause serious injury if you are not careful.

The berries are also poisonous to humans, but are a food source for birds. The hawthorn is an important part of the ecosystem. It provides shelter and food for wildlife. The hawthorn is also known to be used in traditional medicine.

7. Carissa macrocarpa (Natal plum)

The Carissa macrocarpa, also known as the Natal plum, is a tree that is native to South Africa. It is a small tree that only grows to be about 20 feet tall. The Natal plum has dark green leaves and white flowers. The fruit of the Natal plum is a red berry that is about the size of a grape.

The Natal plum tree is known for its thorns, which can be up to four inches long. Its double thorns are curved, and grow in pairs along the branches. If you are looking for a tree that is beautiful and dangerous, the Natal plum is a perfect choice.

The thorns of the Natal plum tree are not only aesthetically pleasing, they also serve a purpose. The thorns help protect the tree from herbivores who would otherwise eat its leaves and fruit. The thorns can also deter humans from getting too close to the tree.

Meet Your Tree Expert

Codey Stout

Codey Stout is the operations manager for Tree Triage and has years of experience removing trees. His expertise has been featured in publications like Yahoo, The Family Handyman, Homes & Gardens, and many more. The only thing Codey likes doing more than removing intrusive trees, is removing unsightly stumps.
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