Weed of the Month – July 2016


(Acacia iteaphylla)

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(Photos: E. Cousins, growth habit, phyllodes and glands, flower clusters; Cape Jervis)

Originally from the Flinders Ranges and Eyre Peninsula, this shrub is now a bit of a pest in parts of Australia, and indeed has been declared an environmental weed in some…probably because its seeds remain viable for long periods, and germinate readily! Being from an arid region, it is also very hardy. It is fast growing to about 2-4 m tall, with upright branches and attractive bluey grey-green foliage. The foliage is not made up of true leaves, but like many acacias, phyllodes (see 2nd photo).These are very narrow and long (50-100mm), with a little gland at the base. They occur alternately along the stems. The perfumed, lemon-yellow flower balls occur in clusters, mainly in spring. These are followed by blue-green seed pods that go brown in maturity. Pretty shrub, but can be a problem!