Plants of
South Australia
Acacia iteaphylla
Willow-leaf Wattle
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Regional Species Conservation Assessments per IBRA subregion.
Least concern
Near threatened
Critically endangered
Data deficient
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Botanical art

Kath Alcock paintings: 6.


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. Iteaphylla from the Greek 'itea' meaning willow and 'phyllon' meaning leaf, alluding to the species narrow, willow-like leaves.

Distribution and status

Endemic to South Australia and found on northern Eyre Peninsula eastward to the Flinders Ranges and northern Mount Lofty Ranges growing on hillsides amongst rocky outcrops or in valleys along rocky creek banks. Widely planted & naturalised elsewhere and widespread in the Mt Lofty Ranges region. Native. Locally common when planted but uncommon in South Australia.
Herbarium regions: Flinders Ranges, Eyre Peninsula
NRM regions: Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, Eyre Peninsula, South Australian Arid Lands, South East
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)

Plant description

Tall glabrous shrub to 4 m high with a single short trunk or dividing near the base, with a smooth, reddish-brown bark. Leaves green, flat, broad-linear to 14 cm long and 8 mm wide, yellowing at the margin and with a small gland on the upper margin. Inflorescent axillary racemes with globular, pale yellow flower-heads. Fruits are light brown linear flat pod to 12 cm long and 10 mm wide. Seeds are hard black ellipsoid seed to 6 mm long and 3 mm wide. Seed embryo type is investing.

Seed collection and propagation

Collect seeds between October and December. 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 average, at 60%. 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:
LocationNo. of seeds
(weight grams)
of plants
Collection number
Collection location
% ViabilityStorage
7,000 (166 g)
7,000 (166 g)
Eyre Peninsula
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.