Acacias of Australia

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Acacia ryaniana Maslin




Restricted to coastal areas between Carnarvon and Coral Bay, W.A. Uncommon where it occurs.


Prostrate or low-domed shrub to 0.3 m high. Branchlets normally pruinose and glabrous, occasionally hairy. Stipules spinose, 2–6 mm long, sometimes with only bases persisting. Phyllodes ovate or elliptic to narrowly elliptic, 12–25 mm long, (5–) 7–15 mm wide, l:w = 1.2–3, coriaceous, glabrous, 1-nerved, finely penninerved; basal gland 0–1 mm above pulvinus, 0.2–0.5 mm long, with sometimes an insignificant gland near mucro. Inflorescences simple, 1 per axil, initiated synchronously with phyllodes on new shoots; peduncles 15–30 mm long, glabrous, with caducous bract near or above middle; heads globular, 10 mm diam. (fresh), densely 60–70-flowered, golden. Flowers 5-merous; sepals free, narrowly spathulate. Pods curved, rounded over seeds, to 8 cm long, 10–18 mm wide, chartaceous, light brown or yellow-brown, glabrous. Seeds transverse to oblique, globose to broadly elliptic, 5–6 mm long, slightly shiny, dark brown, frequently pale-coloured near centre; aril narrow.


Grows in sand over clay or limestone, on dunes and associated flats in scrub or heath, commonly with Triodia sp.


W.A.: 9.6 km N of Quobba Stn, A.S.George 10157 (CANB, PERTH, TLF); Cultivated at Karratha, seed from near Coral Bay, 15 Sept. 1983 and 7 Oct. 1983, P.Ryan s.n. (both PERTH).


Distinguished from other species of the ‘A. victoriae group’ by its ±prostrate habit and curved pods. Also characterised by persistent spinose stipules, short, broad phyllodes, golden heads of 60–70 flowers, non-racemose inflorescences and large seeds. At Cape Cuvier it grows near A. chartacea; these two species are unusual in having a minute second gland, flanked by a pair of stipule-like appendages, located near the apical mucro.

Plants in cultivation may have phyllodes to 3 cm long and tending obovate.

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.Rogers