Mimosa biuncifera

Botanical Name

Mimosa biuncifera Bentham

Common Name(s)

  • catclaw mimosa
  • wait-a-minute bush

Legume Clades

Native Geographic Range

  • Southwestern North America

IUCN Status

Growth Form


Cultivation Status in AZ



Cold-deciduous, densely-branched shrubs to 6.5 ft (2 m) high with brown bark that becomes rough with age. The twigs are armed with prickles. Leaves are bipinnate with 2--8 pairs of pinnae with 5--12 pairs of leaflets per pinna. Small spherical inflorescences of white flowers appear primarily in summer.


Widely distributed from Arizona to Texas and across much of Mexico in a variety of habitats including the upper edge of deserts, grasslands, and oak and pine-oak woodlands.


The plants provide cover and food for a variety of wildlife species, and are occasionally browsed by livestock. The flowers are reported to be good bee forage for honey production. This species can be useful in erosion control.


Catclaw mimosa is rarely cultivated but suitable for planting as a barrier and for wildlife habitat. The plants are hardy to at least 0° F (-18° C). The numerous prickles will tear skin and clothing.