Acacia maidenii

Maiden's Wattle

Family: Fabaceae subfamily Mimosoideae

A tree growing to 20 m tall, erect or spreading, with deeply fissured bark. It is very fast growing, reaching 1.5 m tall in as little as five months.

It grows primarily in areas near the coast in higher rainfall areas on the margins of rainforest and in wet sclerophyll forest. It grows along the coast of NSW and into the tablelands and central western slopes, and into Victoria and Queensland.

The phyllodes (modified leaves) are dark green, alternate along the stem and reach 20 cm in length and to 3 cm wide.

Flowers are produced in spikes up to 6cm long, made up of very small staminate flowers, pale yellow, that often occur singularly in axils of phyllodes or clusters of two to three.

Seed pods are twisted or coiled 1 or more times, to 15 cm long and 0.5 cm wide.

In the garden

It makes an attractive ornamental tree along streets and in parks. It is very good for reforestation in suitable areas.

Prefers full sum to partial shade with an ample supply of water.

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

It has been introduced into India, (Tamil Nadu) and Argentina, and it grows on plantations in South Africa.

The exudates from the trunk (like gum or pitch) have been used in the past for food by indigenous Australians.

Most wattles regenerate from seed after fire with some species exhibiting suckering from bases of trunks.

Acacia – from Greek acis meaning a thorn or “thorny”.
maidenii – named after Joseph Henry Maiden (b.1859 – d.1925), appointed Government Botanist and Director of the Botanic Gardens in Sydney in 1896, retiring in 1924. He was instrumental in establishing the formal herbarium, with a purpose-built building, a botanical museum and lecture room, and established a network of collectors and correspondents.

Not considered at risk in the wild.


By Jeff Howes