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Acacia terminalis (Salisb.) J.F.Macbr.
Family Fabaceae
Subfamily Mimosoideae
Common name: sunshine wattle

Acacia terminalis (Salisb.) J.F.Macbr. APNI*

Synonyms: Acacia paniculata (H.L.Wendl.) J.F.Macbr. APNI*
Racosperma terminale (Salisb.) Pedley APNI*
Acacia discolor (Andrews) Willd. APNI*
Acacia maritima Benth. APNI*
Mimosa botrycephala Vent. APNI*
Mimosa discolor Andrews APNI*

Description: Erect or spreading shrub or occasionally small tree to 6 m high; bark smooth or finely fissured, grey or brown; branchlets angled, glabrous to densely hairy.

Leaves with petiole 0.7–4 cm long, with a gland near basal pinnae or to ½ way below; rachis usually 0.7–9.5 cm long, glabrous to densely hairy, often with a gland at apex, interjugary glands absent; pinnae usually 2–8 pairs, 1–10 cm long; pinnules 5–21 pairs, mostly oblong to narrowly oblong, oblong-elliptic or lanceolate, 2–19 mm long, 1–5.5 mm wide, ± flat, discolorous, dark green and shiny above, paler and dull below, glabrous or ciliate.

Inflorescences in terminal or axillary racemes or panicles; peduncles mostly 3–17 mm long, hairy or glabrous; heads globose, 5–14-flowered, 7–12 mm diam., cream-coloured, pale yellow or bright yellow.

Pods straight or curved, ± flat except raised, rough and often darker over seeds, ± straight-sided but often irregularly constricted between some seeds, 3.5–10 cm long, 12–19 mm wide, leathery, glabrous, with prominent pale margins; seeds longitudinal; funicle filiform.

Photo J. Plaza

Photo Tanja Lenz

Photo Leonie Stanberg

Other photo
Photo J. Plaza


Flowering: February–October.

Distribution and occurrence: south from Tenterfield, chiefly on the coast and ranges.

Grows in dry sclerophyll forest, woodland or heath, usually on sandstone.
NSW subdivisions: NC, CC, SC, NT, CT, ST, CWS
Other Australian states: Vic. Tas.
AVH map***

Intergrades occur between some of the subspecies, especially in the Sydney Basin.

Text by P.G. Kodela
Taxon concept: P.G. Kodela & G.J. Harden (2002)

Taxa not yet included in identification key
Acacia terminalis subsp. angustifolia ms.,    Acacia terminalis subsp. aurea ms.,    Acacia terminalis subsp. longiaxialis ms.

 Key to the subspecies 
1Branchlets sparsely to densely hairy, occasionally glabrous; petiole and rachis usually hairy; flower heads pale yellow or cream-coloured to almost white.2
Branchlets glabrous or with sparse hairs; petiole and rachis usually glabrous; flower heads dark to bright yellow or cream-coloured to almost white.3
2Peduncles 0.7–1.5 cm long, 0.5–1 mm diam.; heads 7–14-flowered; calyx 0.8–1.4 mm long; main axis of panicle or raceme to 16.5 cm long; flowering axes without glandular axillary shoots.subsp. terminalis
Peduncles 0.5–2.1 cm long, 0.3–0.5 mm diam.; heads 5–9-flowered; calyx 0.6–0.9 mm long; main axis of panicle or raceme to 33 cm long; flowering axes occasionally with glandular axillary shoots.
                       Back to 1
subsp. longiaxialis
3Flower heads pale yellow or cream-coloured to almost white, 5–13-flowered, 5–12 mm diam; petiolar gland 2–12 mm long; shrub to small tree to 6 m high.subsp. angustifolia
Flower heads dark to bright yellow or sometimes pale yellow, 5–7-flowered or occasionally up to 11-flowered, 4–10 mm diam.; petiolar gland 1.5–6.7 mm long; shrub to 2 or rarely 3 m high.
                       Back to 1
subsp. aurea

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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