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Acacia rigens A.Cunn. ex G.Don
Family Fabaceae
Subfamily Mimosoideae
Common name: needle wattle, needlebush acacia, nealie, nealia, nilyah

Acacia rigens A.Cunn. ex G.Don APNI*

Synonyms: Racosperma rigens (A.Cunn. ex G.Don) Pedley APNI*
Acacia chordophylla Benth. APNI*

Description: Erect or spreading shrub 1–4 m high; bark finely fissured, dark grey; branchlets angled or sometimes ± terete, minutely appressed-hairy, resinous.

Phyllodes ± rigid, straight to slightly curved, ± terete to compressed-terete, 3–13 cm long, 0.8–1.5 mm wide, finely pubescent and usually becoming glabrescent, longitudinal veins obscure or often some prominent, apex pungent-pointed or acute with a mucro; 1 gland at base; pulvinus c. 1.5 mm long.

Inflorescences simple, 1–4 in axil of phyllodes; peduncles 2–8 mm long, minutely appressed-hairy, the hairs often obscured by resin; heads globose, resinous, 20–30-flowered, 4–7 mm diam., bright yellow. Flowers 5-merous.

Pods strongly curved or twisted or coiled 1–2 times, submoniliform, raised over seeds, 4–10 cm long, 2–3 mm wide, firmly papery to thinly leathery, sparsely to densely minutely appressed-hairy, often resinous or scurfy; seeds longitudinal; funicle filiform.

Photo T.M. Tame

Photo T.M. Tame

Photo T.M. Tame


Flowering: July–October.

Distribution and occurrence: south and west of Gilgandra.

Grows in mallee and woodland in red earths, and occasionally in sandy and shaley soils.
NSW subdivisions: CWS, NWP, SWP, NFWP, SFWP
Other Australian states: Qld Vic. W.A. S.A.
AVH map***

Similar to Acacia havilandiorum which has shorter phyllodes with more numerous and finer veins and a gland near the centre, and flowers that are 4-merous. The name refers, presumably, to the somewhat rigid nature of the phyllodes.

Text by P.G. Kodela
Taxon concept: P.G. Kodela & G.J. Harden, Flora of NSW Vol. 2 (2002)

APNI* Provides a link to the Australian Plant Name Index (hosted by the Australian National Botanic Gardens) for comprehensive bibliographic data
***The AVH map option provides a detailed interactive Australia wide distribution map drawn from collections held by all major Australian herbaria participating in the Australian Virtual Herbarium project.
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