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Tamarix

Scientific NameTamarix aphylla
Common NameTamarix, Tamarisk, Athel Tree, Athel Pine
Hebrew Nameאשל הפרקים

This species of the Tamarix (or Tamarisk) tree is the largest of all Tamarix trees and is native to Africa and the Middle East. It is an evergreen tree, growing up to 18 meters in height. It is usually found growing near springs, streams, or other water sources and is known for tolerating very salty or very alkaline soils. The leaves can even exude salt that is extracted from the soil and in very salty places, the salt will drip from the leaves back onto the soil beneath the tree. The high salt content of its wood and foliage makes the Tamarix tree very difficult to burn and consequently it provides an excellent fire break.

Because of its hardy nature and tolerance to drought and poor soils, the Tamarix tree is often used for land reclamation projects and reforestation efforts in desolate places.