Plants of
South Australia
Acacia erinacea
Leguminosae
Prickly Wattle
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Regional Species Conservation Assessments per IBRA subregion.
Least concern
Near threatened
Rare
Vulnerable
Endangered
Critically endangered
Extinct
Data deficient
Adelaide
Arkaroola
Ceduna
Coober Pedy
Hawker
Innamincka
Marla
Marree
Mount Gambier
Oodnadatta
Renmark
Wudinna
Keith
Yunta
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Botanical art

Kath Alcock paintings: 2.

Etymology

Acacia from the Greek 'akakia' and derived from 'ake' or 'akis' meaning a sharp point or thorn and 'akazo' meaning to sharpen. Dioscorides, the Greek physician and botanist used the word in the 1st century AD for the Egyptian thorn tree, Acacia arabica. Erinacea from the Latin 'erinaceus' meaning prickly, referring to its prickly nature.

Distribution and status

A minor occurrence in the south-west corner of the Nullarbor region, found in open scrub vegetation in shallow calcareous loamy soils. Also occurs in Western Australia. Native. Rare in South Australia. Common in Western Australia.
Herbarium region: Nullarbor
NRM region: Alinytjara Wilurara
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)

Plant description

Small, rigid, spreading, intricate shrubs to 2 m high. Branches spine-tipped, whitish slightly angular-striate, glabrous, becoming grey-brown with young growth reddish. Leaves narrow to broadly obliquely lanceolate to 12 mm long and 4 mm wide, flat, thick, rigid, erect or spreading, grey-green or often with a whitish scurfy covering. Young leaves reddish-brown with a small gland on the upper margin below the centre of the leaves. Inflorescences simple and axillary, solitary with globular, yellow flower-heads. Flowering between September and October Fruits are brown, oblong pods to 3 cm long and 1 cm wide, flattish-obtuse but shortly pointed. Seeds are hard, dark brown to black, ovoid to sectoroid seed to 3 mm long and 3 mm wide. Seed embryo type is investing.

Seed collection and propagation

Collect seeds between November and January. Collect mature pods that are turning brown with hard, dark seeds inside. Place the pods in a tray and leave to dry for 1-2 weeks or until the pods begin to split. Then rub the dried pods to dislodge the seeds. Use a sieve to separate any unwanted material. Store the seeds with a desiccant such as dried silica beads or dry rice, in an air tight container in a cool and dry place. From one collection, the seed viability was high, at 85%. This species has physical dormancy that needs to be overcome for the seed to germinate (e.g. nicking or softening the seed coat).

Seeds stored:
  Hide
LocationNo. of seeds
(weight grams)
Number
of plants
Date
collected
Collection number
Collection location
Date
stored
% ViabilityStorage
temperature
BGA2,400 (25.83 g)154-Nov-2009MJT243
Nullarbor
1-Jun-201085%-18°C
Location: BGA — the seeds are stored at the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, MSB — the seeds are stored at the Millennium Seed Bank, Kew, England.
Number of plants: This is the number of plants from which the seeds were collected.
Collection location: The Herbarium of South Australia's region name.
% Viability: Percentage of filled healthy seeds determined by a cut test or x-ray.