ACACIA

FAMILY: Mimosaceae

TYPE
  • Evergreen
  • Shrubs
  • Trees
  • Deciduous
SUN EXPOSURE
  • Full Sun
WATER
  • Drought Tolerant

Plant Details

Prized for their feathery foliage and showy blooms, acacia species hail from such warm-weather climes as Central and South America, Australia, Mexico, and the American Southwest. In the South, they are typically shrubs or small trees, most commonly grown in Florida and Texas. They are relatively short lived (20 to 30 years) but grow quickly, suffer from few pests, and tolerate poor and dry soils. Require excellent drainage.

purple-leaf acacia

acacia baileyana

  • BAILEY ACACIA (often called mimosa as a cut flower).
  • Evergreen.
  • Zones LS, CS, TS; USDA 8-11.
  • Most widely planted acacia and among the hardiest to cold.
  • Often grown as a multitrunked plant 2030 feet high, 2040 feet wide.
  • Feathery, finely cut, blue-gray leaves.
  • Starts blooming when young; profuse, fragrant yellow flowers early in the year.
  • Thornless.

Purpurea

  • Same as Acacia baileyana, except for purple new growth.

guajillo

acacia berlandieri

  • Deciduous.
  • Zones CS, TS; USDA 9-11.
  • Southwestern native planted as a shrub, hedge, or small tree.
  • Thornless growth reaches 15 feet high and wide.
  • Fernlike foliage.
  • Fragrant white flowers, rich in nectar, bloom winter to spring.

sweet acacia, huisache

acacia farnesiana

  • Deciduous.
  • Zones LS, CS, TS; USDA 8-11.
  • To 20 feet high and 1525 feet wide, with feathery foliage and thorny branches.
  • Fragrant, deep yellow blossoms are borne nearly year-round.
  • In the Lower South, however, cold winters may reduce bloom; flowers may freeze in a cold snap in any area.
  • Garden centers often sell the more cold-tolerant Acacia smallii under this name.

twisted acacia

acacia schaffneri

  • Deciduous.
  • Zones CS, TS; USDA 9-11.
  • To about 18 feet tall and a bit wider, with curving branches like green tentacles and finely divided leaves hiding short thorns.
  • Perfumed yellow ball-shaped flowers appear in spring.

acacia wrightii

  • WRIGHT ACACIA, UA De GATO.
  • Deciduous.
  • Zones LS, CS, TS; USDA 8-11.
  • Cold-hardy acacia native to Texas; survives winter as far north as DallasFort Worth.
  • Usually grows to 610 feet tall and wide, occasionally to 20 feet Pale yellow flowers bloom in spring on 2 inches spikes.
  • Delicate foliage sometimes persists through winter.
  • Thorns on branches have sharp hooks.
  • Does best in dry, well-drained soil.
  • Not well adapted to the Southeast.

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