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Acacia macdonnelliensis

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Acacia macdonnelliensis Maconochie, J. Adelaide Bot. Gard. 1: 183; 184, fig. 3 (1978)

MacDonnell Mulga

Shrub or tree, 3–6 m high, with one or several trunks. Bark deeply fissured, grey. Branchlets sparsely hoary or glabrous, with obscure resinous ridges. Phyllodes erect, very narrowly elliptic to linear or filiform, flat or terete, straight to subfalcate, 4–15 cm long, mostly 0.8–3 (–5) mm wide, with abruptly uncinate apex, coriaceous, subglaucous, glabrous or hoary to sparsely appressed-puberulous, obscurely multistriate with fine non-anastomosing longitudinal veins; gland basal, inconspicuous or absent. Peduncles 2–4 mm long, mostly paired on axes 1–12 mm long. Spikes (0.6–) 1–3 cm long, 3–6 mm diam., dense, golden. Flowers 5-merous; calyx dissected to 1/3, villous basally, with acute lobes; corolla twice the length of calyx, glabrous, Pods linear, slightly constricted between seeds, 3–9.5 cm long, 2–4 mm wide, chartaceous, pale brown. Seeds longitudinal, 2.5–5 mm long, dark brown; areole central, 0.3–1 mm long, sometimes pale; aril whitish.

Occurs in rocky ranges of southern N.T. and in adjacent W.A. in the Rawlinson Ra. and Pollock Hills.

Allied to A. undoolyana .

There are 2 subspecies.

Phyllodes flat; axes of racemes 4–16 mm long which grow out

subsp. macdonnelliensis

Phyllodes terete; axes of racemes 1–10 mm long which grow out.

subsp. teretifolia


Acacia macdonnelliensis Maconochie subsp. macdonnelliensis

Shrub or bushy tree, 2–6 m high. Phyllodes flat, linear or sometimes very narrowly elliptic, 1.5–3 (–6.5) mm wide. Axes of racemes 4–16 mm long which grow out.

Common in the Macdonnell Ra., N.T., extending west to the Petermann Ra., N.T., but rare between the two ranges; recorded in W.A. only from Pollock Hills. Grows mainly in skeletal soils, in rocky mountain ranges usually towards the tops of ridges. Flowers Apr.–Sept.; fruits Sept.–Nov.

Details of ecology, utilisation, etc. of A. macdonnelliensis subsp. macdonnelliensis are given in J.W.Turnbull (ed.), Multipurpose Austral. Trees & Shrubs 156 (1986).

Type of accepted name

Serpentine Gorge, N.T., 29 July 1967, J.R.Maconochie 440 ; holo: DNA; iso: NSW.


Racosperma macdonnelliense (Maconochie) Pedley (as ‘macdonnellense’), Bot. J. Linn. Soc. 92: 248 (1986). Type: as for accepted name.


J.R.Maconochie, J. Adelaide Bot. Gard. 1: 184, fig. 3 (1978); B.R.Maslin, in J.Jessop (ed.), Fl. Centr. Australia 125, fig. 161C (1981); A.Urban, Wildflowers & Pl. Centr. Australia 85 (1990).

Representative collections

W.A.: Pollock Hills, A.S.George 9047 (CANB, PERTH, TLF). N.T.: Central Mt Stuart, T.S.Henshall 476 (CANB, NSW, NT, PERTH); MacDonald Downs, P.K.Latz 5804 (DNA, PERTH n.v .); Standley Chasm area, J.R.Maconochie 452 (NSW, NT).


Acacia macdonnelliensis subsp. teretifolia Maslin, Nuytsia 6: 33 (1987)

Shrub or tree, 2–3 m high. Phyllodes terete, linear-filiform, (0.6–) 0.8–1 mm diam. Axes of racemes 1–7 (–10) mm long which grow out.

Restricted to the Rawlinson Ra., W.A., E to the Petermann Ra., N.T. Grows on rocky, basaltic, granitic or quartzite hillsides in ranges, often with spinifex. Flowers June–Aug.; fruits Oct.

This subspecies is similar to A. tenuissima , but can be distinguished by its sometimes hoary branchlets with less pronounced crenulated resin-ridges, as well as by its shorter peduncles, longer spikes, smaller, villous calyces and whitish arils (B.R.Maslin, op. cit. 34).

Type of accepted name

6 km W of Docker River, just W of the W.A./N.T. border, W.A., 28 June 1983, A.Kalotas 1570 ; holo: PERTH; iso: DNA?.

Representative collections

W.A.: Glen Helen, Rawlinson Ra., A.S.George 8813 (DNA, PERTH); Bungabiddy Rockhole, Walter James Ra., A.S.George 12071 (DNA, PERTH). N.T.: Docker R. area, Mannanana Ra., T.S.Henshall 2766 (BRI, DNA, K, MO, PERTH); c 11 km N of Wangkari, A.C.Kalotas 1558 (DNA, PERTH).


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: Tuesday 11 September 2018