The Endemic Plants of Chile

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Prosopis tamarugo Phil.

Place of Publication

Anales Mus. Nac., Santiago de Chile II: 21 (1891)

Common names

  • tamarugo


  • Philippi R.A. (1891)

    Philippi, R.A. 1891. Catalogus Praevius Plantarum in Itinere ad Tarapaca a Friderico Philippi Lectarum. Anales del Museo Nacional de Chile, Santiago de Chile, II: 1–94.

  • Burkart (1976)

    Burkart, A. 1976. A monograph of the genus Prosopis (Leguminosae subfam. Mimosoideae). Journal of the Arnold Arboretum 57(3-4): 219–249; 450–525.

  • Calderón (2015)

    Calderón, C. , Garrido, M. and Acevedo, E. 2015. Prosopis tamarugo Phil.: a native tree from the Atacama Desert groundwater table depth thresholds for conservation. Revista Chilena de Historia Natural 88:18.

  • Altamirano (2006)

    Altamirano, H. 2006. Prosopis tamarugo Phil.: In Las especies arbóreas de los bosques templados de Chile y Argentina : autoecología. Donoso, C (Editor). Marisa Cuneo Ed. Valdivia, Chile. Concepción, Chile.


Tarapacá, Antofagasta and Arica y Parinacota


Desert and Hyper-arid desert

Distribution and habitat

Distributed in northern Chile along a 300 km long and 40 km wide stretch of desert known as Pampa del Tamarugal (from 19°33" S to 21°50"S). It ranges from 1000 to 1500 m in elevation, growing on salty-sandy or clay loam soils with little no other vegetation.


Deciduous tree to 25 m tall.


Seed of this species is banked by the national seed bank of Chile, INIA.