Photos of Maclura pomifera, Osage Orange, Hedge Apple, Bodark, Bois d'arc.

The name Maclura commemorates William Maclure, an American geologist living from 1763 to 1840. Common names are many and include the familiar Osage Orange, Bois-d’Arc, bodec, hedge-orange, hedge-apple, horse-apple, and mockorange. With crowded zigzag branches armed with sharp stout spines an inch or more long, a thicket of this tree is impenetrable. It is now widespread outside its narrow native range from Arkansas to Texas. Before wire fences were popular, it was extensively planted along fence rows. The most unique feature of the wood is its excellent flexibility and elasticity coupled with its strength. In an 1810 account of his explorations of the interior of the U.S., Bradbury found two Osage Orange trees growing in the garden of Pierre Chouteau, one of the first settlers in St. Louis. Osage Indians, introduced them to the settlement, hence the tree's common name. The Osage highly prized the wood for war clubs and especially bows. A bow made from the wood was worth a horse and blanket in trade. Though the plant grew outside of the Pawnee and Omaha-Ponca’s territories, both tribes prized the wood for bows, and obtained it from Indians in the southern part of Oklahoma.

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