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Acacia dealbata - Link.

Common Name Mimosa, Silver wattle
Family Fabaceae or Leguminosae
USDA hardiness 7-10
Known Hazards None known
Habitats In many habitats by streams, gullies and alpine ridges[154, 184]. Dry forests[260].
Range Australia - Victoria, New South Wales, Tasmania. Naturalized in S. Europe[50].
Edibility Rating    (2 of 5)
Other Uses    (3 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (0 of 5)
Care (info)
Frost Hardy Well drained soil Moist Soil Full sun
Acacia dealbata Mimosa, Silver wattle

(c) ken Fern, Plants For A Future 2010
Acacia dealbata Mimosa, Silver wattle
(c) ken Fern, Plants For A Future 2010


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Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of cone
Acacia dealbata is an evergreen Tree growing to 25 m (82ft) by 8 m (26ft) at a fast rate.
See above for USDA hardiness. It is hardy to UK zone 8. It is in leaf all year, in flower from January to February. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs).
It can fix Nitrogen.
Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: mildly acid and neutral soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map


A. decurrens dealbata.

Plant Habitats

Woodland Garden Sunny Edge; South Wall. By. West Wall. By.

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Flowers
Edible Uses: Gum

Flowers - cooked[144]. Rich in pollen, they are often used in fritters. A gum that exudes naturally from the trunk is edible and is used as a substitute for Gum Arabic[46]. It is very soluble in water and viscous[46, 153], but is of low quality[64]. Larger quantities can be obtained by tapping the trunk[64]. Some species produce a gum that is dark and is liable to be astringent and distasteful, but others produce a light gum and this is sweet and pleasant. It can be sucked like candy or soaked in water to make a jelly.[193]. The gum can be warmed when it becomes soft and chewable[193].

References   More on Edible Uses

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.

None known

References   More on Medicinal Uses

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Other Uses

Dye  Gum  Soil stabilization  Tannin

A yellow dye is obtained from the flowers[168]. A green dye is obtained from the seed pods[168]. The extensive root system of this plant helps to prevent soil erosion[200]. Tannin is obtained from the bark[61, 171]. On a 10% moisture basis, the bark contains 19.1% tannin[223].

Special Uses

Food Forest  Nitrogen Fixer  Scented Plants

References   More on Other Uses

Cultivation details

Prefers a sandy loam and a very sunny position sheltered from strong winds[1, 11]. Succeeds in any good garden soil that is lime-free[11]. Plants become chlorotic on limey soils[200]. They grow well in a hot dry position[166], and are very drought tolerant[245]. Fast growing[88]. Although it prefers a well-drained soil, the plant is tolerant of both drought and wet conditions[260]. Hardy to about -10°c, this species succeeds outdoors in the milder areas of Britain[11, 184], growing well in Cornwall[49, 59]. If it is cut down by frosts it usually resprouts from the base to form a thicket of slender stems[166]. It can be trained and grown against a sunny wall[202]. Plants require hot, sunny summers if they are to ripen their wood fully and flower freely. In Britain they tend to do best when grown in coastal gardens in a sunny, sheltered position that is protected from the wind[11]. This species is closely allied to A. decurrens[11]. Old specimens sucker very freely, often at considerable distances from the parent tree[200]. Plants can be coppiced[134]. A very ornamental tree[1], there are some named varieties[260]. The species is cultivated in S. Europe for ornament, timber and soil stabilization[50]. The flowers are very attractive and are often sold in florists[11, 61]. The violet-like perfume of the flowers can be quite intoxicating on a calm day[245]. This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria, these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby[200].

References   Carbon Farming Information and Carbon Sequestration Information

Temperature Converter

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Plant Propagation

Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a sunny position in a warm greenhouse[1]. Stored seed should be scarified, pre-soaked for 12 hours in warm water and then sown in a warm greenhouse in March. The seed germinates in 3 - 4 weeks at 25°c[133]. As soon as the seedlings are large enough to handle, prick them out into individual pots and grow them on in a sunny position in the greenhouse for their first winter. Plant them out in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts, and consider giving them some protection from the cold for their first winter outdoors. Cuttings of half-ripe wood with a heel, July/August in individual pots in a frame[78]. Overwinter in a greenhouse for the first winter and plant out in their permanent positions in late spring or early summer. Fair percentage[78].

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Native Plant Search

Search over 900 plants ideal for food forests and permaculture gardens. Filter to search native plants to your area. The plants selected are the plants in our book 'Plants For Your Food Forest: 500 Plants for Temperate Food Forests and Permaculture Gardens, as well as plants chosen for our forthcoming related books for Tropical/Hot Wet Climates and Mediterranean/Hot Dry Climates. Native Plant Search

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :

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Expert comment



Botanical References


Links / References

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Readers comment

Barbara Sparks   Sun Jul 10 00:17:30 2005

I love the tree,it is a fast growing tree,but I want to know HOW fast?Will it grow 2-3'a year or how much.Just approximate growth rate,please.I grew one and it grew 18' in about 5 years.Would that be substantial growth for one grown in Winchester,Ohio,about 45 m iles east of Cincinnati,Ohio.

Link: Plant for a Future Questions about Mimosa Tree

Jeremy   Sun Feb 18 2007

This tree species (A. dealbata) is an invasive and noxious weed in N. America (and especially here in Northern California). Under no circumstances should this tree be imported or planted!

Tshewang Dorji   Fri Jun 15 2007

i like the tree basically because of its ability to vegetate the denuded hills. it also improves the soil by adding nitrogen. this species is not yet grown on large scale plantations in my country but researchers are on their way to find the desirable traits and assess the environmental impacts of growing Acacia dealbata on large scale especially on the degraded and waste lands in bhutan. i would therefore like to get valuable suggestions from the experts on this matter. any information provided would be appreciated and acknowledged.

   Tue Apr 1 2008

I live in very northern california 13 miles from the coast and in 8 years a small acacia forest has developed on my property in a rocky riparian area. Some of the trees are twenty feet tall. These grow faster than my cedars or any other tree for that matter.

aliz   Sun Jun 15 2008

This is an interesting conversation about acacia. I have more of a commerce questions, as a consumer interested in sustainability. Plantation-grown acacia is often referred to as "renewable" (seems to me that can be applied to anything you can plant, in theory). But since it seems that it sounds like it's a fast-growing tree, does that mean I can buy an acacia salad bowl, for instance, with a clear conscience? How sustainable is acacia? Many thanks!

Laurae Hughes   Thu Oct 9 2008

My grandfather planted many of these trees around his home in Hiouchi, CA about 60 years ago. Many have been cut down to make room for other things, like tennis courts. I came out from the east coast to visit, and there were still many there so I dug up a few small seedlings to take home with me. What do I need to do to make sure these little guys make it? They are VERY sentimental to me as they are the babies of the very same trees that my deceased grandfather planted all those years ago.

david n   Thu Oct 9 2008

My best advice is avoid damaging the roots, water gereously at time of planting & then 1 or 2 x a week for a month or so if there's little rain,the roots drying out the main worry at this stage. Follow the instructions on cultivation above,parts of the east coast will be unsuitable in terms of cold (it only takes down to zone 8 (-12)F) and possibly other things. You may want to keep looking around for someone with personal experience with this particular plant. Staking a good idea if it's windy at new site.

david n   Fri Oct 10 2008

error in previous reply: zone 8 is -12 C / 10F...... NOT -12 F

Liz Baggallay   Wed Jan 6 2010

We have a house in the Roussillon region of France. When we bought it, we thought how lovely it was to have mimosas in the garden. Little did we know how invasive this tree is. When you cut it down, shoots rapidly appear. If someone can tell me how to get rid of it effectively, I would be most grateful

J. Ferro   Tue Jan 12 2010

I advise moast caution when plantig exotic species, these is a beautiful tree but can became e weed in mild areas of europe. It propagates very easely specialy after wild fires ocupying extense burned areas! Fortunatly is a short life species (no more than 30 to 40 years), it also dont tolerate shade by other trees. So my advise is if you want to control or irradicate it you should plant a lot of native species (bushes and trees) that tolerate shadow and in time they will overpass the acacias, and do every year manual cutings using the wood for fire for example, and in about 10 years they will desapear. Greetings J. Ferro - Portugal

Chicken food, drops prolifically on the ground, reduces need for external food inputs. Native to NSW but naturalised in Victoria, Australia.   Jul 25 2012 12:00AM

High protein seeds highly palatable by chickens
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