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Acacia lunata

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Acacia lunata G.Lodd., Bot. Cab. 4: t. 384 (1819)

Lunate-leaved Acacia

Shrub 1–3 m high. Branchlets glabrous. Phyllodes on short stem-projections, usually inequilaterally oblanceolate to narrowly elliptic with the abaxial margin straight and adaxial margin curved, mostly 2–3 cm long, 4–9 mm wide, l:w = 3–5, acute to obtuse, excentrically mucronate, thin, green, glaucous to subglaucous when young, glabrous or few marginal hairs near base; midrib not prominent and slightly or obviously towards adaxial margin; lateral nerves obscure; gland not prominent, 2–6 mm above pulvinus. Inflorescences racemose, prolific in upper axils; raceme axes mostly 2–4 cm long, glabrous; peduncles 2–4 mm long, glabrous; heads globular, 5–6 mm diam. at anthesis (fresh) , loosely 3–5-flowered, bright golden. Flowers 5-merous; sepals united. Pods narrowly oblong, to 6 cm long, 7–8 mm wide, firmly chartaceous to thinly coriaceous, pruinose especially on convexities over seeds, glabrous. Seeds longitudinal, ovate, 4 mm long, dull, black; aril clavate. < /FONT >

Occurs from Putty and Cessnock S to Richmond and Dural, also Bralga Tops, N.S.W. Usually grows in sand on sandstone, often on slopes near creeks, in Eucalyptus open forest. 162.

G.Bentham’s, Fl. Austral. 2: 373 (1864), concept of A. lunata included A. leucolobia (syn. A. dealbata A.Cunn., A. brevifolia G.Lodd. & A. oleifolia sens. Benth.), a taxon now regarded as a distinct species. Bentham is followed here by regarding A. falcinella Tausch as conspecific with A. lunata , however, in the absence of seeing the type it is difficult to be sure what this name refers to.

J.H.Maiden, Forest Fl. New South Wales 5: 78–85, pl. 165 (1911), treated A. lunata as conspecific with A. buxifolia (see A. buxifolia for discussion of these two species and A. leucolobia ). It should be noted that Maiden’s illustration of the plant he considered to be typical A. lunata contains two significant inaccuracies, namely, the flowers per head are too numerous and the phyllode midribs are shown as centrally situated.

The phyllodes of A. lunata are normally similar to those of A. semilunata in being on short stem-projections and inequilaterally oblanceolate to narrowly elliptic with the abaxial margin straight and the adaxial margin shallowly convex. However, sometimes a few phyllodes, rarely all of them, have a convex abaxial margin and consequently the marked asymmetry is lost. Specimens with symmetrically oblanceolate or elliptic phyllodes are distinguished from A. leucolobia and A. buxifolia by their 3–5-flowered heads.

Acacia semilunata is recognised especially by its pubescent, terete branchlets (angled towards extremities in A. lunata ), 15–20-flowered heads and linear pods 4–5 mm wide.

Type of accepted name

Cultivated in England, material originating from New Holland [Australia, presumably N.S.W.]; n.v.


Acacia lunata Sieber ex DC., Prodr. 2: 452 (1825), nom. illeg. (later homonym). Type: Fl. Novae Holl. [Australia, presumably N.S.W.], F.Sieber 461 ; holo: G-DC; iso: K, MEL, MO, NSW, OXF.

Acacia falcata var. minor Colla, Hortus Ripul . Append. 4, 28 (1830); Mem. Reale Accad. Sci. Torino 35: 175 (1832). Type: cultivated in 1828 at Hortus Ripulensis; holo: TO (specimen ex herb. Colla).

? Acacia falcinella Tausch, Flora 19: 419 (1836). Type: based on a cultivated plant; n.v. Synonymy following G.Bentham, Fl. Austral. 2: 373 (1864).


G.Loddiges, loc. cit. ; T.Tame, Acacias SE Australia 165, fig. 186f (1992).

Representative collections

N.S.W.: Colo Heights- Upper Colo, 25 Aug. 1959, E.F.Constable s.n. (NSW, PERTH); Cessnock, V.C.Davis 7342/16 (NSW); Dural- Rouse Hill road, 30 Oct. 1956, O.D.Evans (NSW, PERTH); The Putty Rd, 9 km S of the Putty turn-off towards Windsor, B .R.Maslin 5937 (MEXU, NSW, PERTH); Bralga Tops, Glenrock Stn, Upper Barnard R., 4 Sept. 1980, J.C.Turner (NSW).


WATTLE Acacias of Australia CD-ROM graphic

The information presented here originally appeared on the WATTLE CD-ROM which was jointly published by the Australian Biological Resources Study, Canberra, and the Department of Parks and Wildlife, Perth; it was produced by CSIRO Publishing from where it is available for purchase. The WATTLE custodians are thanked for allowing us to post this information here.

Page last updated: Thursday 22 June 2023