Few trees in the desert provide as much as the mesquite. The trees grow in areas known as mesquite bosques or forests. The wood is very hard and used for building fine furniture and other items and is commonly burned for charcoal or for barbeques. The demand for mesquite wood for fires has decimated the tree in some areas. The Indians used mequite beans or seeds and pods to make a flour-like paste that was highly nutritious. The trees are relatively fast growing, but an older one, like the one in the photo can be relatively rare. This is one case where a food product, mesquite beans, goes to waste due mainly to ignorance of its value.