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Puerto Rico Sensitive-Briar
Mimosa asperata

Family: Mimosaceae
Genus: Mimosa (mim-MOH-suh) (Info)
Species: asperata (as-per-AH-tuh) (Info)


Alpines and Rock Gardens


Tropicals and Tender Perennials


36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)


36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)


USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 °C (20 °F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 °C (25 °F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 °C (30 °F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 °C (35 °F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Sun to Partial Shade


Plant has spines or sharp edges; use extreme caution when handling

Bloom Color:


Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall

Mid Fall

Late Fall/Early Winter


Grown for foliage



Other details:

May be a noxious weed or invasive

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

Soil pH requirements:

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

8.6 to 9.0 (strongly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse

From seed; sow indoors before last frost

From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:

Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds

Gardeners' Notes:


On Mar 1, 2009, htop from San Antonio, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

I have not grown this plant. Puerto Rico Sensitive-Briar (Mimosa asperata, synonyms: Mimosa pigra var. berlandieri, Mimosa berlandieri) is also commonly known as zarza, black mimosa, coatante, chaven and espina de vaca. It is native to the lower Rio Grande region of Texas (Cameron, Hidalgo counties), Mexico (Chiapas, Sinaloa, Tabasco, Tamaulipas, Nayarit, Veracruz), Belize, Brazil, Cuba, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Paraguay and Puerto Rico. It can be found on seasonal wet areas of clay soils in otherwise dry lake beds, large river floodplains, edges of marshes and low lying marshy areas of pastures. Black mimosa tolerates a wide variety of soil conditions and withstands short-term flooding as well as seasonal drought.

Mimosa asperata is a densely-branched shrub which has branche... read more