Why is a saguaro cactus not a tree?
Trees and shrubs are "woody."
A cactus is a type of "succulent" or juicy, fleshy plant:
The following is an interesting fact sheet for kids:
Anthony R. Brach, PhD
Missouri Botanical Garden c/o Harvard University Herbaria
In a word - Wood. Or lack there of.
Since the saguaro produces no lignin - the woody material in wood - it is not
a tree. Banana palms have the same distinction.
To a botanist - a plant which produces no lignin is a herb. That means that a
banana and a saguaro are herbs!!!??!!
Would you like herbs with your ice cream sundae?
Tennant Creek Australia
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Update: June 2012