Graves, Arthur H. Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station, New Haven, Connecticut.
Davis, Kenneth P. School of Forestry, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut.
Last reviewed:January 2021
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The genus Maclura of the mulberry family, with one species, M. pomifera. The osage orange tree may attain a height of 60 ft (18 m) and has yellowish bark, milky sap, simple entire leaves, strong axillary thorns, and aggregate green fruit that are about the size and shape of an orange (see illustration). Maclura pomifera is planted for hedges and as an ornamental tree, especially in the eastern United States, where it is naturalized. The wood is used for fence posts and fuel and as a source of a yellow dye. It also has been used for archery bows (hence, the origin of one of its common names, bowwood). The Janka hardness for osage orange is 2400 lb-force (1089 kg-force); its density is 54 lb/ft3 (865 kg/m3). See also: Forest and forestry; Fruit; Ornamental plants; Rosales; Tree
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