Acacia oxycedrus

Spike wattle

Family: Fabaceae subfamily Mimosoideae

A prickly but interesting wattle, growing to 3 m high by 2 m wide. It is typically found on sandy soils in dry sclerophyll forest or heath in South Australia, Victoria and New South Wales. In NSW, it is mainly confined to the Greater Sydney Basin but with disjunct populations on the far south coast.

The phyllodes (modified leaves) are dark green, rigid and sharp-pointed, to 4 cm long and about 0.5 cm wide, usually with 3 or 4 longitudinal prominent veins.

Flower heads are cylindrical (spikes), to 3 cm long and very showy with up to 3 spikes produced in each phyllode axil; bright yellow or pale yellow, appearing from July to October,

Pods to 10 cm long but less than 1 cm wide.

Grows in places like Sydney sandstone woodland, so very hardy in terms of sun and temperature tolerance.

In the garden

An attractive frost hardy and adaptable plant that grows best in a sunny, reasonably well drained positions in most soils. An excellent plant for small bird-nesting, due to its prickly protective foliage.

It can be very showy with prolific flowers.

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.

Likely regenerates from seed after fire.

Other information

Acacia from Greek acis, a thorn.
oxycedrus refers to the species likeness to a prickly or sharp cedar.

Not known to be at risk in the wild.




By Jeff Howes