593px-Acacia_polyacantha,_habitus,_Walter_Sisulu_NBT

Acacia polyacantha (Willd.)

Category:

Product Description

Description: Medium to large deciduous tree with flaky, grey corky bark often with thorned bosses. Thorns small and hooked. Bipinnate leaves up to 20cm long with 20-60 pairs of fine (2-5mm) grey-green leaflets. Flower a 12cm creamy white spike appearing with new leaves. The fruit thin, straight, flat brown pod (8-18cm) and dehiscent (splitting).

Features of Particular Interest: Tree shape and distinctive foliage.

Height and Spread: 10m – 20m high, 5m – 8m spread

Periods of Interest:

J

F

M

A

M

J

J

A

S

O

N

D

Leaf

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

Flower

X

X

X

X

Fruit

X

X

X

X

Bark

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

Cultivation

Soil and Moisture: Acacia polyacantha occurs in a variety of soils. Plant in full sun or semi shade and water regularly. It is drought resistant.

Aspect: Grows well in exposed situations.

Hardiness: Hardy once established.

Maintenance and Pruning: Not required unless taking fire wood.

Propagation: Acacia polyacantha is relatively easy to germinate. The seed should be planted with a light sand/soil cover and watered regularly. Transplant into larger bags when several leaves have emerged.

Problems and Drawbacks: Roots not known to be intrusive, but it will lose its leaves and seed pods in winter, so do not plant near swimming pools.

Use and Associated Planting: Fast growing and is a useful quick fix. Consequently often used as a woodlot tree and to re-colonise bare ground. Also used a nursery tree for slower growing trees and can be removed when slower growers are established.

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Notes:

Family:
Mimosoideae
Genus:
Acacia
Species:
polyacantha
Common Name(s):
White Stem Acacia
Synonym(s):
Acacia campylacantha (Hochst. Ex A. Rich.)
Origin:
Africa
Size:
Medium
Flower Colour:
White Spike
Fruit Colour:
Light Brown
Features:
Specimen, Bark
References:
Coates Palgrave p.294, Timberlake et.al. p.102-103, Dharani p.134-137.
Pocket List of S.A Indigenous Trees No.:
180
Zimbabwe Nat. Tree List No.:
219