Acacia denticulosa

Sandpaper Wattle

Family: Fabaceae subfamily Mimosoideae

Acacia denticulosa is an open, somewhat sparse shrub to 4 m high, it is endemic to Western Australia and it listed as threatened with extinction. It is found on sandy soils and granite outcrops, growing in semi-arid shrublands. It is found in an area east of Mt Churchman, south to Nugarin and west to Wongan Hills in Western Australia, an area generally confined between Perth, Geraldton and Kalgoorlie.

Phyllodes (modified leaves) are very atypical for a wattle, being large, crinkled and somewhat undulating, generally ovate in shape, to about 10 cm long and 8 cm wide. They are thick and scabrous / rough with a sandpaper and leathery texture. They also have toothed margins and are dark green.

Flowers produced in showy spikes (cylindrical heads), to 8 cm long, in leaf axils, consisting very small staminate flowers. The flowers are bright yellow, very showy and produced in spring.

Seed pods straight to slightly curved, to 8 cm long and less than 1 cm wide.

In the garden

Has a history of being cultivated and it is grown by some Sutherland members at least. It is a unique wattle to grow, in terms of its atypical foliage. It is reported to be a quick growing plant and will last for several years at least. Plant in full sun, in a well-drained sandy soil. It will be intolerant of damp areas and may not thrive in humid areas.

Acacias can suffer from a number of pests, including borers, scale, galls and leaf miners. Growing plants suitable to your local environment minimises these occurring.


Propagation is easy from scarified seed by covering with boiling water for 24 hours and discarding any seeds still floating on the surface.

Other information

Most wattles will regenerate from seed after fire with some species exhibiting suckering from the base.

Acacia from Greek acis, meaning a thorn or “thorny”.
denticulosa – Latin referring to toothed (roots of denticulate/dentistry) referring to the toothed margins (edges) of the phyllodes.

This species is listed as threatened under both Western Australian and Commonwealth legislation.



By Dan Clarke