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Acacia is indigenous to warm regions like Mexico and Australia. They attract birds and work well in multiple climates. They are generally used in landscaping. Acacia seeds are often used for seasoning food and drinks, and are listed as ingredients in Barq's root beer and Altoids mints. The species Bullhorn acacia lacks the bitter alkaloids usually located in the leaves that defend against insects and animals. Bullhorn acacia ants fulfill that role. They lives in its hollowed out thorns at the base of their leaves and protect the tree and in exchange live off the protein rich nodules (Beltian bodies) and nectar from the glands on its leaf stalk. There is no other known function of these Beltian bodies than to feed the ants. The aggressive ants release an alarm pheromone that livestock smell and avoid. The ants will also "prune" seedlings around it to prevent them from block out sunlight, which the Acacia's need to survive.
Interesting Acacia that grows as a ground cover. It's a tough plant that does well with heat, drought and poor soils. They have narrow, gray green, leathery leaves with puffy yellow flower balls in the spring.
|Plant Types:||Groundcover, Perennial|
|Height:||1 foot to 2 feet|
|Width:||10 feet to 20 feet|
|Zones:||8b to 11b|
|Bloom Seasons:||Early spring, Mid winter, Late winter|
|Leaf Color:||Blue, Green|
|Special Features:||Attractive foliage, Attracts birds, Not North American native|
|Shape:||Spreading or horizontal|
|Fertilizer:||Miracle-Gro® Shake 'n Feed® Continuous Release All Purpose Plant Food, Miracle-Gro® Water Soluble All Purpose Plant Food|
|Want to know where Acacia will thrive in your house or garden? The EasyBloom Plant Sensor will give you a plant's-eye view of your environment to measure soil, sunlight, temperature and humidity.||
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Few nurseries carry more than just a handful of Acacia species, but they are easily propagated via self collected seed. They can also be grown from cuttings and grafting.
Acacias are native to warm regions of the world and do best with full sun. Size varies depending on the variety. The shortest, Acacia redolens, generally varies between 1' and 6' tall, with a spread of up to 15'. The tallest variety, Acacia koa, can reach heights and spreads of up to 60'.
Flowers form in early to midwinter and some species have very fragrant flowers.
They require little to no water, and will basically grow in any soil that is not too wet.
Acacia can form either shrubs or trees, depending on their pruning treatments during early life. To produce a more shrub-like plant, remove the lead shoot. For a more tree-like plant, prune lower branches. Regardless, branch density should be thinned out and pruned back to the trunk to prevent dieback of innermost branches and protect against wind damage.
Pest infestation and damage is rarely a problem.