The name Joshua tree was given by a group of Mormon settlers who crossed the Mojave Desert in the mid-19th century. The tree's unique shape reminded them of a Biblical story in which Joshua reaches his hands up to the sky in prayer. Joshua trees are fast growers for the desert; new seedlings may grow at an average rate of 7.6 cm (3.0 in) per year in their first ten years, then only about 3.8 cm (1.5 in) per year. The trunk consists of thousands of small fibers and lacks annual growth rings, making it difficult to determine the tree's age. This tree has a top-heavy branch system, but also what has been described as a "deep and extensive" root system, with roots reaching up to 11 m (36 ft). If it survives the rigors of the desert, it can live for hundreds of years; some specimens survive a thousand years.
2470mmcolorsd850death valleydesertjoshua treelandscapesnikonsand dunessunsettamronSteve Berkley, from
Southwest Tour w/Marc Adamus