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Desert Almond

(Prunus fasciculata)

Desert Almond, also known as wild almond, or desert peach, is a spiny and woody shrub producing wild almonds, native to the deserts of Arizona, California, Baja California, Nevada and Utah. The plant is not cultivated. Some Native Americans in its limited range learned traditional ways of using it: the Cahuilla prepared the drupe as a delicacy. The wild almonds were considered a delicacy by Native Americans. The Kawaiisu found the tough twigs useful as drills in starting fires and as the front portion of arrow shafts. The seed contains too much cyanide to be edible, but see under Paleobotanical evidence below.