Sapindus drummondii

Jaboncillo, Western Soapberry

About This Plant

Sun or partial sun; deciduous, growing up to 30 feet or more in deeper soils. Showy yellow fall color, clusters of persistent fleshy fruit, and attractive greyish bark provide year-round interest. As the name suggests, the fruits form a good lather in water. Soapberry spreads by rhizomes to form groves, especially on limestone, along fencelines, and at the sunny edges of fields. In south-central Texas, it’s normally found in understory in combination with other small-sized trees.

Origins: U.S. and northern Mexico; Arizona to Louisiana and north to Kansas.


Pruning is always optional. Focus on minimizing dead, damaged or rubbing branches. Remove no more than 25% of the total canopy during any five-year cycle, and never remove more than the lowest third of the tree in a single pruning period — on a 12-foot tree, stick to the lowest 4 feet.

A hardy native with beautiful yellow fall color.

Min. Height: 25'

Max Height: 30 feet'

Min. Width: 25'

Max Width: 40 feet'

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