• A storm gathers behind the pueblo at Tuzigoot


    National Monument Arizona

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  • Fire Restrictions in Effect

    Fire restrictions are now in effect, including restrictions on smoking - smoking is only allowed within vehicles. The 2014 fire restrictions for Tuzigoot and Montezuma Castle are consistent with Arizona State Forestry Division restrictions. More »

Trees and Shrubs

Saltbush flowers

Saltbush is used in many ways by Native peoples - as a dye, a seasoning and a baking soda substitute.


Limited by lack of water, shrubs and trees must disperse in order to survive. Once established, these desert plants are tenacious. Their roots will split rocks in search of nutrients, and many can live over 100 years. Shrubs and trees are distinguished by their height (a less reliable indicator in the desert) and the number of stems (shrubs have several). Common shrubs include Mormon tea, crucifixion thorn, creosote bush, four-wing saltbush, and cliffrose. Mormon tea contains psuedoephedrine, which is used in nasal decongestants. Many trees grow in the area, though most are limited to riparian areas where water is more plentiful. These include sycamore, velvet ash, black walnut, and Fremont cottonwood. Some tamarisk can be found and is a non-native species that can supplant native trees and significantly alter stream environments. National Park Service staff continue to remove tamarisk within the monument.

Did You Know?

Prickly pear

Both the fruits and pads of the prickly pear cactus can be eaten! Today you can buy them at some grocery stores, but the javelina who roam around Tuzigoot National Monument like to eat them right off the plant.