The Native Plants of Jordan

Written by gemma argent
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The Native Plants of Jordan
Jordan is mostly a desert environment. (Wadi rum desert image by Jody Vrugteveen from

The small country of Jordan is bordered by Syria, Iraq and Saudi Arabia. Its territory includes the Dead Sea. About 3/4 of Jordan is desert land with little rain; however, the Jordan River does flow from the mountains all the way to the Dead Sea. Jordan has three geographic regions: the mountain plateau, the valley and the desert. Although the climate is mostly dry and hot, Jordan has a large variety of native plants that thrive in this type of environment.


Since Jordan is dominated by desert conditions throughout the country, many flowering plants have adapted to drought conditions and therefore do not require a lot of water. Examples of drought-tolerant flowers include the yarrow, which is a perennial flower that blooms between April and May; the Palestine pheasant's eye, an annual flower that blooms between March and May; the perennial holly hock that blooms in April through June; the prickly alkanet, a perennial flower that blooms from March to June; and the perennial common anemone, blooming from February to April.


Many of Jordan's native shrubs are specially adapted to the arid desert conditions. Native deciduous shrubs include the prickly shrubby burnet, the white broom and the milk vetch shrub. Evergreen shrubs include the spurge and the white rock-rose, both of which require direct sunlight. All of these shrubs require very little water.

Perennial bulbs

Jordan has a variety of native perennial bulb plants that emerge from the ground after rainfall, or if a creek or river overflows and wets the surrounding ground. Bulb plants include the squill that flowers between the months of August and October; oporanthus, flowering from September to December; the fragrant purple grape hyacinth that flowers from January to March; and the white polyanthus narcissus that blooms around December to January.

Other Plants

Additional native plants of Jordan include the tartar lily, caper bushes, Christmas mistletoe, iris petrana, and the brilliant, red-flowering flame tree. The caper bushes and flame trees are found all over Jordan and grow easily in the arid climate.

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