Honey Locust Tree

February 15, 2023

Dale_epod_thorn_image1 (015)

Dale_epod_thorns_image0 (02C)

Photographer: Dale Hugo   

Summary Author: Dale Hugo     

Shown above is a honey locust tree (Gleditsia triacanthos), that I photographed this past September in Arlington Height, Illinois. Sometimes referred to as the thorny locust, this deciduous tree in the family Fabaceae, is indigenous to central North America. It’s often found in the moist soil of river valleys. In the Mid-West and central plains of the U.S. they were on occasion planted as windbreaks to help stabilize soil.

The thorns of the honey locust are fierce (bottom photo). They tend to grow in pairs along the tree’s lower branches and trunk. It’s thought that the long, sharp thorns evolved to protect the tree from the grazing megafauna that flourished during the last ice age.


Arlington Heights, Illinois Coordinates: 42.0884, -87.9806

Related Links:

Moss on Locust Tree