Terrestrial Invasives

Acacia podalyriifolia

Acacia podalyriifoliaPearl acacia

Common Name 
Pearl acacia
Legal Status 
Emerging Weed

Acacia podalyriifolia is one of the most popular and widely cultivated of wattles. It is an evergreen shrub or tree growing 3-6m high, with silvery-grey to dull green, oval, velvety leaves. Flowers are bright yellow, spherical and appear in long, showy sprays from June to August. Greyish brown, velvety seed pods are usually 30-80 mm long and 15-20mm wide. 

Where does this species come from? 
Acacia podalyriifolia is native to Australia.

Why is it a problem? 
In South Africa, where it is relatively widespread, A. podalyriifolia competes with and has the potential to replace indigenous species and is therefore regarded as a 'potential transformer' of natural vegetation. A. podalyriifolia has been listed as a Category 1b invader in South Africa.

Means of reproduction? 
Acacia podalyriifolia reproduces through its long-lived seed that have a prolonged dormancy. Germination of these seeds peaks after fires and other forms of disturbance. The seeds are most commonly dispersed by ants and birds, which are attracted by the fleshy arils attached to the seeds. However, they are probably also spread by wind and water.