Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Datasheet

Acacia farnesiana
(huisache)

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Datasheet

Acacia farnesiana (huisache)

Summary

  • Last modified
  • 08 June 2018
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Host Plant
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Acacia farnesiana
  • Preferred Common Name
  • huisache
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Plantae
  •     Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •       Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •         Class: Dicotyledonae
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • A. farnesiana is an aggressive colonizer and is regarded as an invasive weed both in parts of its native range and where introduced, notably in Australia, the USA, and some Pacific and Caribbean islands. A. far...

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Pictures

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PictureTitleCaptionCopyright
A. farnesiana seedling amongst leaf litter.
TitleSeedling
CaptionA. farnesiana seedling amongst leaf litter.
CopyrightSheldon Navie
A. farnesiana seedling amongst leaf litter.
SeedlingA. farnesiana seedling amongst leaf litter.Sheldon Navie
Young plant of A. farnesiana.
TitleYoung plant
CaptionYoung plant of A. farnesiana.
CopyrightSheldon Navie
Young plant of A. farnesiana.
Young plantYoung plant of A. farnesiana.Sheldon Navie
Leaves and stem of A. farnesiana.
TitleFoliage
CaptionLeaves and stem of A. farnesiana.
CopyrightSheldon Navie
Leaves and stem of A. farnesiana.
FoliageLeaves and stem of A. farnesiana.Sheldon Navie
Open flowers of A. farnesiana.
TitleFlowers
CaptionOpen flowers of A. farnesiana.
CopyrightSheldon Navie
Open flowers of A. farnesiana.
FlowersOpen flowers of A. farnesiana.Sheldon Navie
Immature fruits of A. farnesiana.
TitleFruits
CaptionImmature fruits of A. farnesiana.
CopyrightSheldon Navie
Immature fruits of A. farnesiana.
FruitsImmature fruits of A. farnesiana.Sheldon Navie
Mature fruits, open flowers and foliage of A. farnesiana.
TitleFruits
CaptionMature fruits, open flowers and foliage of A. farnesiana.
CopyrightSheldon Navie
Mature fruits, open flowers and foliage of A. farnesiana.
FruitsMature fruits, open flowers and foliage of A. farnesiana.Sheldon Navie
Mature fruits of A. farnesiana.
TitleFruits
CaptionMature fruits of A. farnesiana.
CopyrightSheldon Navie
Mature fruits of A. farnesiana.
FruitsMature fruits of A. farnesiana.Sheldon Navie
Tree habit of A. farnesiana.
TitleHabit
CaptionTree habit of A. farnesiana.
CopyrightSheldon Navie
Tree habit of A. farnesiana.
HabitTree habit of A. farnesiana.Sheldon Navie
A. farnesiana tree in Texas, USA.
TitleHabit
CaptionA. farnesiana tree in Texas, USA.
CopyrightN.M. Pasiecznik
A. farnesiana tree in Texas, USA.
HabitA. farnesiana tree in Texas, USA.N.M. Pasiecznik

Identity

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Acacia farnesiana (L.) Willd.

Preferred Common Name

  • huisache

Variety

  • Acacia farnesiana var. farnesiana
  • Acacia farnesiana var. guanacastensis Clarke, Seigler & Ebinger

Other Scientific Names

  • Acacia minuta (M.E. Jones) Beauchamp
  • Acacia smallii Isely
  • Mimosa farnesiana L.
  • Pithecellobium minutum M.E. Jones
  • Vachellia densiflora Alexander ex Small
  • Vachellia farnesiana (L.) Wight & Arn.

International Common Names

  • English: Cassie flower; Fragrant acacia; sweet acacia
  • Spanish: aroma; Aromo creole; Aromo macho; Cachito; Carbonero; cashia; espinial; huisache; rayo
  • French: Acacie odorante; Cassier
  • Portuguese: esponjeira

Local Common Names

  • Australia: mimosa bush; needle bush
  • Bangladesh: Guva-babul
  • Brazil: espinilha; espinilho; esponjeira
  • Cuba: aroma amarilla
  • El Salvador: espino blanco; espino ruco
  • Fiji: ban baburi; Ellington's curse; vaivai vakavotona
  • Germany: Aber falsche Bezeichnung; Antillen Akazie; Echte Akazie; Mimose gebraeuchliche; Schwammbaum
  • India: Dei-babul; Gabur; gand-babul; gukikar; jali; kankar; Kankri; passi-babul; vilaiti-babul; vilayati-kikar
  • India/Assam: Tarua-kadam
  • India/Tamil Nadu: Kadivel; vedda vala
  • Italy: acacia farnese
  • Mexico: huisache
  • USA: opoponax
  • USA/Hawaii: klu; popinac

EPPO code

  • ACAFA (Acacia farnesiana)

Summary of Invasiveness

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A. farnesiana is an aggressive colonizer and is regarded as an invasive weed both in parts of its native range and where introduced, notably in Australia, the USA, and some Pacific and Caribbean islands. A. farnesiana is mostly a weed of pastures and able to form dense thorny thickets, which may cause injury to livestock and may shade out native fodder species.

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Plantae
  •         Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •             Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •                 Class: Dicotyledonae
  •                     Order: Fabales
  •                         Family: Fabaceae
  •                             Subfamily: Mimosoideae
  •                                 Genus: Acacia
  •                                     Species: Acacia farnesiana

Notes on Taxonomy and Nomenclature

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A. farnesiana is one of few New World species of the genus, thought to have originated in Central America, and similar in morphology and habitat preferences to the South American A. caven. Suggested revisions of the genus by Pedley which would transfer all Australian species to the new genus Racosperma and some African species to Senegalia, would leave these New World species and their Africa and Asia relatives unchanged in taxonomical terms. It has a large number of common names, known widely in North America by its common Spanish name of 'huisache', more often in Europe by names describing the sweet fragrance of its flowers.

Description

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A. farnesiana is a spinescent shrub, or rarely a small tree, 2-7 m tall with several slender stems and long thin branches growing from ground level. University of Hawaii Botany Department (1998) describe A. farnesiana as thorny, deciduous, growing to 4 m in height. The following description is adapted from Gilman and Watson (1993) and Watson and Dallwitz (1999). A tall, semi-evergreen shrub or small tree with feathery, fine divided leaflets of a soft, medium, green colour. The slightly rough stems are a rich chocolate brown or grey, possessing long, sharp, multiple thorns. Branches glabrous or nearly, purplish to grey, with very small glands; stipules spinescent, usually short, up to 1.8 cm long, rarely longer, never inflated; leaves twice pinnate, with a small gland on petiole and sometimes one on the rachis near top of pinnae; pinnae 2-8 pairs, leaflets 10-12 pairs, minute, 2-7 mm long, 0.75-1.75 mm wide. The small, yellow, puff-like flowers are very fragrant and appear in clusters in late winter then sporadically after each new flush of growth providing nearly year-round bloom. Flowers glabrous, leathery; in axillary pedunculate heads, calyx and corolla glabrous, scented. Pod indehiscent, straight or curved, 4-7.5 cm long, about 1.5 cm wide, subterete and turgid, dark brown to blackish, glabrous, finely longitudinally striate, pointed at both ends; seeds chestnut-brown, in two rows, embedded in a dry spongy tissue, 7-8 mm long, ca 5.5 mm broad, smooth, elliptic, thick, only slightly compressed; areole 6.5-7 mm long, 4 mm wide. The persistent fruits have a glossy coat and contain seeds which are cherished by birds and other wildlife.

Plant Type

Top of page Broadleaved
Perennial
Seed propagated
Shrub
Tree

Distribution

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A. farnesiana is considered as a native of North America by Gilman and Watson (1993) though its exact status there is debated (Wagner et al., 1990; Luken and Thieret, 1996; USDA-NRCS, 2002). New (1984) describes its origin as 'problematical' because it has been so widely introduced beyond its native range and because this introduction process has occurred over a much longer time period than for many other Acacia spp., postulating that the native range of A. farnesiana was the 'New World'. ILDIS (2002) note that A. farnesiana is probably native to tropical America, from Brazil and Peru to Mexico and the southern USA, and has been widely planted across the world, becoming naturalized in many countries. The exact status in the Caribbean is still unclear, however, with it being noted as both native and exotic in neighbouring islands.

Distribution Table

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The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.

Continent/Country/RegionDistributionLast ReportedOriginFirst ReportedInvasivePlantedReferenceNotes

Asia

AfghanistanPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
BhutanPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
CambodiaPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
ChinaPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
IndiaWidespreadIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
-KarnatakaPresent Planted
-MaharashtraPresent Planted
-Uttar PradeshPresent Planted
IndonesiaPresentIntroduced Invasive Holm et al., 1991; ILDIS, 2002
-JavaPresent Planted
IranPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
IraqPresentIntroduced Invasive Holm et al., 1991; ILDIS, 2002
IsraelPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
JapanPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
-Ryukyu ArchipelagoPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
KuwaitPresentIntroduced Planted
LaosPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
LebanonPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
MalaysiaPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
MaldivesPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
PakistanPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
PhilippinesPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
Saudi ArabiaPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
Sri LankaPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
SyriaPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
TaiwanPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
ThailandPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
VietnamPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002

Africa

AlgeriaPresentIntroduced Planted
ComorosPresentIntroducedILDIS, 2002
EgyptPresentIntroduced Planted
EthiopiaPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
GhanaPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
LibyaPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
MauritiusPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
MoroccoPresentIntroduced Planted
MozambiquePresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
RéunionPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
SeychellesPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
South AfricaPresentIntroduced Not invasive Planted ILDIS, 2002
SudanPresentIntroduced Planted
TanzaniaPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
-ZanzibarPresentIntroduced Planted
TogoPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
UgandaPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
ZimbabwePresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002

North America

MexicoPresentNative Invasive Holm et al., 1991; ILDIS, 2002
USAPresentPlanted, Natural
-AlabamaPresent Natural USDA-NRCS, 2002
-ArizonaPresentNative Invasive Natural USDA-NRCS, 2002
-CaliforniaPresentNative Invasive Natural USDA-NRCS, 2002
-FloridaWidespread Invasive Planted, NaturalUSDA-NRCS, 2002
-GeorgiaPresent Natural USDA-NRCS, 2002
-HawaiiWidespreadIntroduced Invasive Planted USDA-NRCS, 2002
-LouisianaPresent Natural USDA-NRCS, 2002
-MississippiPresent Natural USDA-NRCS, 2002
-New MexicoPresentNative Invasive Natural USDA-NRCS, 2002
-TexasWidespreadNative Invasive Planted, NaturalUSDA-NRCS, 2002

Central America and Caribbean

Antigua and BarbudaPresent Planted ILDIS, 2002
BahamasPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
BarbadosPresent Planted ILDIS, 2002
BelizePresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
Cayman IslandsPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
Costa RicaPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
CubaPresentIntroduced Invasive ILDIS, 2002; Oviedo Prieto et al., 2012
DominicaPresent Planted ILDIS, 2002
Dominican RepublicPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
El SalvadorPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
GrenadaPresent Planted ILDIS, 2002
GuadeloupePresent Planted ILDIS, 2002
GuatemalaPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
HaitiPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
HondurasPresentNative Planted ILDIS, 2002
JamaicaPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
MartiniquePresent Planted
MontserratPresent Planted
Netherlands AntillesPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
NicaraguaPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
PanamaPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
Puerto RicoPresentIntroduced Invasive USDA-NRCS, 2002
Saint Kitts and NevisPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
Saint LuciaPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
Saint Vincent and the GrenadinesPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
United States Virgin IslandsPresentIntroduced Planted USDA-NRCS, 2002

South America

ArgentinaPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
BoliviaPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
BrazilPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
ColombiaPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
EcuadorPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
French GuianaPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
GuyanaPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
ParaguayPresentNative Invasive Natural Holm et al., 1991
PeruPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
SurinamePresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002
VenezuelaPresentNative Natural ILDIS, 2002

Europe

FrancePresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
ItalyPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
SpainPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002

Oceania

AustraliaWidespreadIntroduced Invasive Holm et al., 1991
-Australian Northern TerritoryPresentIntroduced Invasive Planted
-New South WalesPresentIntroduced Invasive Planted
-QueenslandPresentIntroduced Invasive Kleinschmidt and Johnson, 1977; Anon., 2003
-South AustraliaPresentIntroduced Invasive Planted
Cook IslandsPresentIntroduced Planted PIER, 2004
FijiPresentIntroduced Invasive Holm et al., 1991; ILDIS, 2002
French PolynesiaPresentIntroduced Invasive ILDIS, 2002; PIER, 2004
GuamPresentIntroduced Natural PIER, 2004
KiribatiPresentIntroduced Planted PIER, 2004
NauruPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
New CaledoniaPresentIntroduced Invasive Planted PIER, 2004
Northern Mariana IslandsPresentIntroduced Planted ILDIS, 2002
PalauPresentIntroduced Planted PIER, 2004
Solomon IslandsPresentIntroduced Invasive Planted PIER, 2004
VanuatuPresentIntroduced Invasive Planted PIER, 2004

History of Introduction and Spread

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A. farnesiana is the most widely distributed species of the genus, now naturalized in many regions of the tropics and subtropics from its origins in tropical America. A contributing factor is its wide adaptability and tolerance of drought, frost, fire, saline soils and other growth-limiting conditions. Holm et al. (1991) report A. farnesiana as a serious weed in Iraq, a principal weed in Australia, Fiji, Indonesia, Mexico and Paraguay, a common weed in Hawaii and the Philippines and present as a weed in numerous other countries. University of Hawaii Botany Department (1998) report that it is present on all the Hawaiian islands, with dense infestations on the islands of Lualualei, O'ahu, Lihau and Maui. In Puerto Rico, it is common and spreads rapidly, occupying more than 1000 hectares in dry coastal areas and offshore islands (Francis and Liogier, 1991), classed it as a category 3 problem plant especially in grasslands.

Risk of Introduction

Top of page The intentional introduction of this species as an agroforestry species, an ornamental plant or for uses such as perfumes carries the risk of future invasion.

Habitat

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A. farnesiana is found in a variety of habitats in both its native and introduced ranges. It is common in arid and semi-arid grasslands and wastelands. Sierra Madre Alliance (2003) report its occurrence in North America on slopes and in canyons, valleys, plains and dry valleys where it may be associated with Sonoran desert scrub, tropical deciduous forest and grassland, and is particularly common in disturbed areas, for example along roads or in agricultural and heavily grazed sites.

Habitat List

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CategoryHabitatPresenceStatus
Terrestrial-managed
Cultivated / agricultural land Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Managed grasslands (grazing systems) Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Rail / roadsides Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Urban / peri-urban areas Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Terrestrial-natural
semi-natural/Cold lands / tundra Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
semi-natural/Deserts Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
semi-natural/Natural grasslands Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)

Hosts/Species Affected

Top of page It is a principal weed of grasslands, both natural and managed, though it will also invade cultivated fields.

Biology and Ecology

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Phenology and Physiology

New (1984) reports that the biology of this species has been neglected, particularly in relation to its biology in different countries, or the existence of different races. More research is needed on genetic variation in this species. Gilman and Watson (1993) regarded this species as very slow growing in its native range, a factor which has reduced its popularity in cultivation, with a lifespan of up to 50 years.

Reproductive Biology

The fruit is a dry elongated pod which remains on the tree but attracts a variety of wildlife in its native range including birds, squirrels and other mammals (Gilman and Watson, 1993).

Environmental Requirements

A. farnesiana is a tropical and sub-tropical species, though it shows some tolerance to frost in Mediterranean climates. It is a highly adaptable species, tolerant of drought, frost, fire, saline soils and other growth-limiting conditions. On Hawaii, this species grows in dry habitats between sea level and 1000 m (University of Hawaii Botany Department, 1998). It is able to grow in acid, alkaline or clay soil and can tolerate drought becoming deciduous if the soil dries (Gilman and Watson, 1993). It prefers full sun over shade (Gilman and Watson, 1993).

Latitude/Altitude Ranges

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Latitude North (°N)Latitude South (°S)Altitude Lower (m)Altitude Upper (m)
33 -33 0 1500

Air Temperature

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Parameter Lower limit Upper limit
Absolute minimum temperature (ºC) -5
Mean annual temperature (ºC) 15 28
Mean maximum temperature of hottest month (ºC) 32 42
Mean minimum temperature of coldest month (ºC) 4 14

Rainfall

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ParameterLower limitUpper limitDescription
Dry season duration012number of consecutive months with <40 mm rainfall
Mean annual rainfall1504000mm; lower/upper limits

Rainfall Regime

Top of page Summer
Uniform

Soil Tolerances

Top of page

Soil drainage

  • free

Soil reaction

  • acid
  • alkaline
  • neutral

Soil texture

  • heavy
  • light
  • medium

Special soil tolerances

  • saline

Notes on Natural Enemies

Top of page In its native range, no important pests or diseases were noted by Gilman and Watson (1993). Exit holes are often seen on the pods, however, in both the native and introduced range, indicating attack by seed-feeding insects (N Pasiecznik, CABI, personal communication, 2004).

Means of Movement and Dispersal

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A. farnesiana is primarily dispersed by animals, notably livestock. Ungulates which feed on the pods can disperse A. farnesiana seeds (University of Hawaii Botany Department, 1998). In its native North America the seeds attract a variety of wildlife in its native range including birds, squirrels and other mammals (Gilman and Watson, 1993).

Regarding long-distance dispersal, A. farnesiana has been widely introduced over a very long period, being one of the earliest Acacia species to have been introduced outside its native range. It has become naturalized in many countries, and so intentional introduction is likely to be the cause of future instances of invasion.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Impact Summary

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CategoryImpact
Animal/plant collections None
Animal/plant products None
Biodiversity (generally) Negative
Crop production None
Environment (generally) Negative
Fisheries / aquaculture None
Forestry production None
Human health None
Livestock production Negative
Native flora Negative
Rare/protected species None
Tourism None
Trade/international relations None
Transport/travel None

Economic Impact

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As a weed of grasslands, A. farnesiana has an economic impact on the livestock industries where invasive, by reducing available forage and restricting access to watering points and hampering mustering. However, no quantitative figures are reported.

Environmental Impact

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Impact on Habitats

The habit of forming dense thickets is likely to shade out native vegetation and result in changes in nutrient cycling.

Impact on Biodiversity

No direct references were encountered but A. farnesiana is likely to shade out native flora. The fruits are eaten by many birds and mammals in the native range and are likely to be eaten and potentially dispersed by birds and mammals in the exotic range.

Threatened Species

Top of page
Threatened SpeciesConservation StatusWhere ThreatenedMechanismReferencesNotes
Sesbania tomentosaNational list(s) National list(s); USA ESA listing as endangered species USA ESA listing as endangered speciesHawaiiCompetition - monopolizing resourcesUS Fish and Wildlife Service, 2010b
Wilkesia hobdyi (dwarf iliau)CR (IUCN red list: Critically endangered) CR (IUCN red list: Critically endangered); National list(s) National list(s); USA ESA listing as endangered species USA ESA listing as endangered speciesHawaiiCompetition (unspecified)US Fish and Wildlife Service, 2010a

Social Impact

Top of page Gilman and Watson (1993) report that people can be hurt by the sharp thorns, though this is likely to be incidental.

Risk and Impact Factors

Top of page Invasiveness
  • Invasive in its native range
  • Proved invasive outside its native range
  • Highly adaptable to different environments
  • Tolerates, or benefits from, cultivation, browsing pressure, mutilation, fire etc
  • Has high reproductive potential
  • Has propagules that can remain viable for more than one year
Impact outcomes
  • Damaged ecosystem services
  • Ecosystem change/ habitat alteration
  • Negatively impacts agriculture
  • Reduced native biodiversity
Impact mechanisms
  • Competition - monopolizing resources
  • Competition
  • Produces spines, thorns or burrs
Likelihood of entry/control
  • Highly likely to be transported internationally deliberately
  • Difficult/costly to control

Uses

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A. farnesiana is a true multipurpose species, with all parts of the plants being used as a resource. Floral essential oils of A. farnesiana are used in perfumes; the gum is used as a substitute for gum arabic; bark and pods are used for dyeing and tanning; the pods and leaves are forage for livestock; and extracts from the bark, leaves, flowers and green pods are used in traditional medicine in many areas. The wood makes an excellent fuel and can be used for posts, tool handles, turnery and to make furniture. It is also used as an ornamental species, for example in India. Unripe (green) pods, when broken, yield a sticky substance which is used as a glue. It is, however, principally noted as a dryland forage species, with the foliage and the pods being palatable and nutritious. It is a nitrogen-fixing species and has also been used for erosion control.

Uses List

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Animal feed, fodder, forage

  • Fodder/animal feed
  • Invertebrate food for lac/wax insects

Environmental

  • Boundary, barrier or support
  • Erosion control or dune stabilization
  • Shade and shelter
  • Soil improvement
  • Windbreak

Fuels

  • Fuelwood

General

  • Ornamental

Human food and beverage

  • Honey/honey flora
  • Spices and culinary herbs

Materials

  • Carved material
  • Dye/tanning
  • Essential oils
  • Gum/resin
  • Lipids
  • Miscellaneous materials
  • Wood/timber

Medicinal, pharmaceutical

  • Source of medicine/pharmaceutical
  • Traditional/folklore

Wood Products

Top of page

Furniture

Roundwood

  • Posts

Woodware

  • Industrial and domestic woodware
  • Tool handles
  • Turnery

Similarities to Other Species/Conditions

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A. farnesiana may occasionally be confused with other Acacia species with similar, round, yellow and fragrant inflorescences, such as A. dealbata. The cylindrical pods, smaller leaflets and long thin thorns of A. farnesiana are, however, generally distinctive features. It is also occasionally confused with another similar American native, A. caven from Chile.

Prevention and Control

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Cultural Control

Le Houérou (2002) report the use of fire in Fiji where the fire is constructed at ground level about the stems, with a high heat being maintained for several hours. However, if the aboveground parts of A. farnesiana are killed by fire, the plant has the ability to resprout from basal shoots (University of Hawaii Botany Department, 1998).

Mechanical Control

Roots and seedlings are removed manually in Fiji (Le Houérou, 2002). Mechanical methods are employed to remove A. farnesiana and other woody weeds in Australia and the USA, and Swarbrick (1997) notes that it is destroyed by cultivation and grubbing.

Chemical control

Swarbrick (1997) notes that A. farnesiana is probably susceptible to picloram, metsulfuron-methyl, glyphosate, triclopyr, 2,4-D, tebuthiuron and hexazinone. Extensive work on the use of herbicides has been conducted in the USA and Australia. 2,4,5-T ester, which has previously been used to treat A. farnesiana, is now banned.

Biological Control

University of Hawaii Botany Department (1998) report that no tests for potential biological control have been carried out in Hawaii.

References

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Anon., 1998. Hawaiian alien plant studies. Hawaii, USA: University of Hawaii Botany Department. http://www.botany.hawaii.edu/faculty/cw_smith/aca_far.htm.

Anon., 2003. Environmental Weeds. List of the 200 most invasive environmental weeds in South East Queensland. Government of Queensland, Department of Natural Resources and Mines. www.nrm.qld.gov.au/pests/environmental_weeds.

Clarke HD, Seigler DS, Ebinger JE, 1989. Acacia farnesiana (Fabaceae: Mimosoideae) and related species from Mexico, the southwestern U.S., and the Caribbean. Systematic Botany, 14(4):549-564; 28 ref.

Cribb AB, Cribb JW, 1976. Wild food in Australia. Brisbane: Fonda.

El-Gamassy AM, Rofaeel IS, 1975. The effect of some procedural aspects in the extraction of cassis essential oil on their yield, contents and properties. Egyptian Journal of Horticulture, 2:53-65.

El-Gamassy AM, Rofaeel IS, 1975. The effect of tree age and time of day for collecting the flowers on the flower yield, content and composition of cassis (Acacia farnesiana) essential oils. Egyptian Journal of Horticulture, 2:39-52.

Felker P, Reyes I, Smith D, 1983. Twig girdler (Oncideres spp.) damage to Acacia, Albizia, Leucaena and Prosopis in the new world. Nitrogen Fixing Tree Research Reports, 1:44-45

Gilman F, Watson DG, 1993. Acacia farnesiana Sweet Acacia. USDA Forest Service Department of Agriculture Fact Sheet ST-5, November 1993. hort.ifas.ufl.edu/trees/acafara.pdf.

Goor AY, Barney CW, 1976. Forest tree planting in arid zones. Second edition. New York, USA: Ronald Press.

Holm LG, Pancho JV, Herberger JP, Plucknett DL, 1991. A Geographic Atlas of World Weeds. Malabar, Florida, USA: Krieger Publishing Company.

ILDIS, 2002. International Legume Database and Information Service. University of Southampton, UK. http://www.ildis.org/database/.

Kleinschmidt HE, Johnson RW, 1977. Weeds of Queensland. Brisbane, Australia: Department of Primary Industries.

Kleinschmidt HE, Johnson RW, 1977. Weeds of Queensland. Queensland: Government Printer.

Le Houérou HN, 2002. Species description. Acacia farnesiana (L.) Willd. http://www.fao.org/ag/AGP/AGPC/doc/Gbase/DATA/Pf000113.HTM.

Luken JO, Thieret JW, 1996. Assessment and Management of Plant Invasions. New York, USA: Springer-Verlag. 324 pp.

New TR, 1984. A biology of acacias. Melbourne, Australia; Oxford University Press, 153pp.

Nielsen IC, Fortune Hopkins HC, 1992. Flora Malesiana. Series I, Spermatophyta: flowering plants. Volume 11, part. 1: Mimosaceae (Leguminosae-Mimosoideae). Leiden, Netherlands: Rijksherbarium, 226 pp.

NWSEC, 1998. Noxious Weeds List for Australian States and Territories. National Weeds Strategy Executive Committee. http://www.weeds.org.au/docs/weednet6.pdf.

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