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Acacia siculiformis

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Acacia siculiformis A.Cunn. ex Benth. (as ‘siculaeformis’), London J. Bot. 1: 337 (1842)

Dagger Wattle

Glabrous shrub to 2–3 m high, sometimes procumbent. Penultimate branchlets with prominent lenticels and/or bark breaking into rectangular flakes. Stipules deltate, c. 0.5 mm long. Phyllodes sessile, normally patent to inclined, normally slightly asymmetric, lanceolate to linear-lanceolate or narrowly elliptic, usually 1–3.5 cm long, 1.5–4 mm wide, with unequal and oblique base, pungent, rigid; midrib prominent; gland obscure, 3–6 mm above pulvinus, sometimes absent. Inflorescences simple, normally 1 per axil; peduncles 0–13 mm long; basal bract frequently cleft; heads globular, 30–40-flowered, pale yellow. Flowers 5-merous; sepals free. Pods stipitate, oblong to narrowly oblong, to 5.5 cm long, 4–7 mm wide, chartaceous. Seeds transverse to oblique, oblong to elliptic, 3–3.5 mm long, dark grey-brown to black, exarillate; funicle filiform.

Common in the ranges of south-eastern Australia mainly from Grenfell and Nowra, N.S.W., S through A.C.T. to Mt Buller, Vic. Also scattered further N in N.S.W. from Gloucester to Glen Innes; scattered in Tas. occurring near the Great Lake, Ben Lomond and Little Swanport. One of the Gunn 207 syntypes of A. stuartiana was said to have been collected from Mt Wellington. Usually grows in open forest, in rocky or sandy situations, often near streams.

Plants from high elevations in southern N.S.W. (Braidwood to Mt Kosciusko, also Sugarloaf Mt and Bethungna), Vic. and Tas. with flower-heads sessile, pods c. 3 cm long and phyllodes sometimes only c. 5 mm long, are sometimes called A. siculiformis var. bossiaeoides (syn. A. stuartiana ). Although herbarium material suggests clinal variation to the typical variant (peduncles 3–13 mm long, pods to 5.5 cm long), future field studies may suggest that var. bossiaeoides should be formally recognised.

Acacia siculiformis is not far removed from the ‘ A. ulicifolia group’; may resemble A. saxicola , a member of this group, which has non-lenticellate branchlets, subsessile phyllodes and normally longer, longitudinal seeds. In Tas. sometimes sympatric with, and resembling, A. genistifolia . Superficially similar to A. maitlandii which has resinous-viscid branchlets, phyllodes with a short pulvinus, heads with more flowers and longitudinal seeds. Resembles broad phyllode forms of A. sphacelata subsp. recurva (W.A.).

Type of accepted name

Camden and Argyle [counties, N.S.W.], A.Cunningham s.n. ; syn: NY; Rocky Hills S (sphalm. ‘N’) from Lake George, N.S.W., Apr. 1824, A.Cunningham 45 ; syn: A, BM, K, OXF.


Acacia siculiformis var. bossiaeoides Benth., London J. Bot. 1: 337 (1842). Type: Tasmania, R.Gunn 207 ; syn: K (numerous specimens), NSW; Tasmania, Lawrence; syn: n.v.

Acacia stuartiana F.Muell. ex Benth., Linnaea 26: 609 (1855). Type: Australian Alps, 5000 feet, F.Mueller s.n. ; syn: K; Tasmania C.Stuart ; syn: K; Tasmania, R.Gunn 207 ; syn: K (numerous specimens).


N.T.Burbidge & M.Gray, Fl. Austral. Cap. Terr. 199, fig. 193B (1970); M.Simmons, Acacias Australia 43 (1981); L.F.Costermans, Native Trees & Shrubs SE Australia 308 (1981); T.Tame, Acacias SE Australia 105, fig. 101, pl. 101 (1992).

Representative collections

N.S.W.: Coolamon Ck, Kosciusko Natl Park, A.Rodd & R.Coveny 2581 (NSW, PERTH). A.C.T.: Glendale, Gudgenby R., N.Burbidge & M.Gray 6183 (CANB, PERTH). Vic.: Rocky Plain, Benambra- Wulgulmerang road, A.C.Beauglehole 35884 & K.C.Rogers (MEL, PERTH). Tas.: Ranges inland from Little Swanport, J.G. & M.H.Simmons 1713b (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: Thursday 22 June 2023