Acacias of Australia

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Acacia benthamii Meisn.




Restricted to the Kings Park and Subiaco areas of Perth, Wanneroo and near Yanchep, W.A.


Shrub ±1 m high. New shoots minutely woolly. Branchlets ribbed, glabrous, occasionally ±sparsely minutely woolly. Stipules caducous but present and obvious on new shoots, partially or ±wholly joined, 1.5–2 mm long. Phyllodes linear, attenuate at both ends, often inequilateral, straight to ±curved, 2–4.5 cm long, 2–4 mm wide, acute, pungent, thinly coriaceous, glabrous, with 2 or 3 distant main nerves per face; secondary nerves few, parallel, obscure, infrequently anastomosing; gland 2.5–11 mm above pulvinus; pulvinus discernible but not well developed, 0.2–0.5 mm long, yellow, subsmooth to finely wrinkled. Peduncles 1 or 2 per axil, 2.5–5.5 mm long, glabrous; heads globular, 5 mm diam., 27–35-flowered, golden; bracteoles spathulate, sharply inflexed. Flowers 5-merous; sepals free. Pods not seen.


Grows typically on limestone breakaways.


W.A.: Kings Park, H.Demarz 6149 (PERTH); East Wanneroo, J.Havel 120 (PERTH).


A poorly known species related to A. sessilis by its minutely woolly new shoots, united caducous stipules, axillary peduncles and free sepals; A. sessilis is most readily recognised by its shorter, normally terete to subterete phyllodes and mostly sessile, 18–24-flowered heads. Acacia benthamii closely resembles narrow phyllode forms of A. cochlearis; indeed, G.Bentham, Fl. Austral. 2: 324 (1864), considered it to be only a ‘slight variety’ of A. cochlearis to which he referred the Preiss paralectotype. Acacia cochlearis is most reliably distinguished from A. benthamii by its free stipules, epulvinate phyllodes, and straight (not crisped) hairs on its new shoots and often also by the branchlets. The status of A. benthamii will need to be reassessed when pods come to hand.

FOA Reference

Data derived from Flora of Australia Volumes 11A (2001), 11B (2001) and 12 (1998), products of ABRS, ©Commonwealth of Australia



Minor edits by J.Reid