Salt Cedar / Tamarix aphylla / أثل عديم الأوراق
Status: Common

As a a medium-sized tree, it grows upto a height of 18 m (60 feet). The leaves are small-sized, being 1-2 mm long and arranged alternately along the branches. The tree trunk is thick  and the crown is large. 
The branches of the tree are spreading with rough and deeply furrowed bark that is dark grey to greyish-brown in colour. 
The younger stems are smooth, jointed, and have a bluish-green or greyish-green colour.
The flowers are small in size, with petals of about 2 mm length and are stalkless, pale pink to white in colour. They are held in clusters or groups of about 3-6 cms long near the tips of the branches. Male and female flowers are borne on the same tree and each flower has five sepals and five petals which are about 2 mm each in length. The male flowers have five stamens. Flowering mostly occurs during summer between July to November and the peak season is in August to September. It is known to reproduce both from seeds and suckering. Spines are absent and the tree is a non-succulent. 
The fruits look like red pointed cones, being 5 mm long. The seeds are enclosed inside small bell-shaped capsules which are 2-3 mm long with very fine tufts of hair covering these capsules. It is known to reproduce both from seeds and suckering.
Salt is secreted out from the leaves which then forms a crusted layer on the surface of the leaves and later drips onto the ground.

Other names: Athel Tamarisk  or Athel  Pine.

IUCN red list status: not evaluated

Local status: least concern