Page authors: Don Knoke, David Giblin
Gleditsia triacanthos
honey locust

Distribution: Occurring east of the Cascades crest and in the Columbia River Gorge in Washington; Washington to California, east across North America where native to the central and eastern regions.

Habitat: On edge of riparian zones, typically in areas with some level of disturbance.

Flowers: April-June

Origin: Introduced from central and eastern North America

Growth Duration: Perennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern


Large tree to 45 m., the trunk and branches armed with simple or branched spines 6-10 cm. long.


Leaves alternate, pinnate or bipinnate; pinnate leaves 10-15 cm. long, leaflets 15-37, elliptic, 2-4 cm. long, remotely serrate; bipinnate leaves up to 20 cm. long with 8-14 pinnae, each with up to 31 leaflets about 2 cm. long.


Inflorescence of pendulous racemes 5-15 cm. long; flowers inconspicuous, greenish, regular, not two-lipped.


Pods leathery, flat and twisted, 30-50 cm. long and 4-7 cm. wide, the numerous seeds embedded in pulp.

Accepted Name:
Gleditsia triacanthos L.
Publication: Sp. Pl. 2: 1056-1057. 1753.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Gleditsia triacanthos L. var. inermis (L.) C.K. Schneid.
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Gleditsia triacanthos in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Gleditsia triacanthos checklist entry.

OregonFlora: Gleditsia triacanthos information.

E-Flora BC: Gleditsia triacanthos atlas page.

CalPhotos: Gleditsia triacanthos photos.

USDA Plants: Gleditsia triacanthos information.

18 photographs:
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