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Acacia farnesiana

Sweet acacia

Garden

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  • Acacia farnesiana | Copyright Greenplantswap 2017

Features

  • BloomsJanuary to May
  • Height5m to 9m
  • Spread4m
  • Growth HabitHemi-spherical
  • Flower ColourBright orange yellow
  • Leaf ColourMedium-green

Description

Acacia farnesiana (Sweet acacia). Also known as Vachellia farnesiana and previously known as Mimosa fanesiana. This tree will produce an incredible display of orange-yellow, fragrant flower-balls in winter and spring. The leaves are fern-like and dark green. The branches contain thorns which are about an inch long, which would make this species an excellent barrier. Bipinnate leaves up to 5cm long with tiny leaflets are carried on the spiny branches.

Characteristics

Evergreen, Fragrant

Other common names

Popinac, Huisache

Origin

Southwestern United States and Mexico. The name farnesiana comes from the Italian Odoardo Farnese (1573–1626) who under the patronage of Alessandro Farnese, managed some of the very first private European botanical gardens in Rome.

Interest and use

The seeds have a high tannin content and are used medicinally as well as pressed for oil. The bark is also used for its high tannin content. The leaves can be used to give a tamarind flavour in food. The flowers are used for a perfume called 'Cassie'.

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  • Acacia farnesiana | Copyright Greenplantswap 2017

Needs

  • LightPart shade
  • HardinessTropical (min 17°C)
  • SoilWell drained, Light, Medium
  • Soil pH5.0 to 8.0
  • WaterMoist

Cultivation

Tolerates heat, drought and cold and survives well in desert areas of the southwest USA. Like all acacias, it is a legume, which produces its own nitrogen, thereby fertilizing itself and all those trees and plants around it. As a crop, it has an minimum optimum growing temperature of 20C and a maximum optimum growing temperature of 32C.

Propagation

Propagate by seed in the spring. Soak them in warm water until swollen first. Root semi-ripe cuttings in summer.

Pests, diseases or disorders

Red spider mite, scale insects and mealy bug.

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