Acacias of Australia

Print Fact Sheet

Acacia farinosa Lindl.

Common Name

Mealy Wattle




Occurs in the Eyre and Yorke Peninsulas, Kangaroo Is. and south-eastern S.A., extending into western Vic.


Rounded shrub 1–2 m high. Branchlets terete with low ridges, glabrous or sub-glabrous, appressed-puberulous at the nodes. New shoots often mealy white. Phyllodes ascending, oblanceolate to linear-oblanceolate, mostly shallowly incurved, rarely some or all straight, (1–) 2–7 cm long, (1–) 2–6 (–7) mm wide, with rounded-obtuse apex, callose-mucronulate, rigid, thick and ±fleshy, appressed-puberulous on pulvinus and blade-base otherwise glabrous, with 2–7 immersed to slightly raised distant main nerves and the venules often appearing as irregular incomplete lines, often with few anastomosing secondary nerves on broadest phyllodes; gland 2–9 mm above pulvinus. Inflorescences simple; peduncles (1–) 2–4 (–5) mm long, densely white appressed-puberulous; heads globular, 3.5–4 mm diam., 7–17-flowered, golden, subtended by ±5 sterile bracteoles; bracteoles thick, ovate, acute, at or near peduncle apex, with those in heads peltate-spathulate. Flowers 5-merous; sepals free, white-resinous. Pods linear, submoniliform, shallowly to obviously curved, openly coiled or twisted upon dehiscence, to 6 cm long, (1.5–) 2–3 mm wide, rigid, crustaceous, glabrous. Seeds longitudinal, elliptic, 3.5–4 mm long, black; funicle fleshy; aril small, apical.


Grows mostly in sand and loam, in shrubland and woodland, often associated with Lerp mallee (Eucalyptus incrassata).


S.A.: just S of Port Rickabey, J.Z.Weber 4030 (PERTH); c. 8 km NE of Port Neill on Lincoln Hwy, D.J.E.Whibley 1964 (PERTH). Vic.: Western Hwy c. 5 km from the S.A. border, 21 Aug. 1957, A.J.Hicks (MEL, PERTH).


Seemingly related to A. dawsonii. Sometimes superficially resembling A. wilhelmiana which is a resinous shrub and further distinguished by its yellow-puberulous peduncles that are normally arranged on short racemes. Phyllodes sometimes superficially resembling those of A. sclerophylla var. sclerophylla, which is most readily distinguished by its glabrous peduncles, and A. ancistrophylla var. lissophylla which differs significantly in having more numerous longitudinal nerves that are much closer together than those of A. farinosa; furthermore, neither of these two varieties have ±fleshy phyllodes like those of A. farinosa.

Notes on the unusual inflorescence structure are given in R.S.Cowan & B.R.Maslin, Nuytsia 10: 79 (1995).

FOA Reference

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



Edited by B.R.Maslin