in Tucson, Phoenix,
Arizona and California

Gardening in Tucson, Phoenix, Arizona and California

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Acacia aneura: Mulga

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Form: Multi-trunked shrub or, with pruning, tree.
Leaf retention: Evergreen.
Growth rate: Moderate, depends upon water.
Mature Size: 20-25' high and 15-20' wide.
Flowers: Yellow, small short bottlebrush shape, fragrant, edible when cooked.
Bloom: In cycles, 2-4 times, spring to fall.
Fruit: Seed pod, dropped when mature. Seeds are edible when ground and cooked.
Leaves: Leaf-like stalks, narrow, linear, with pointed tips, gray-green, new growth bronzy-brown. Provides dense shade.
Stems: No thorns. Rigid, brittle, prone to damage in high winds. Bark produces an edible gum that is sweet when light in color.
Roots: Nitrogen-fixing*, deep.
Wildlife: Attracts bees. Grazed by mammals and must be protected from livestock.
Toxic / Danger: No.
Origin: Australia.

Cultivation and Uses
USDA hardiness zones: 8b-11.
Heat tolerant: Yes.
Drought tolerant: Yes.
Sun: Full sun. Shade causes sparse leaves and leggy growth.
Water after becoming established: Once every month or two. Adapted to regions with unreliable rains, and does not like excessive or frequent water. Always water at drip line (under tips of branches farthest from trunk) to encourage sideways root growth.
Soil: Well drained, dry, low in organic content, pH 6.1-9.0 (slightly acidic to highly alkaline). *Do not use a nitrogen fertilizer.
Mulch: Not necessary. Allow light leaf litter from plant, but avoid heavy accumulation because of fire danger.
Prune: Lightly, periodically, never more than 30% of crown, and do that in winter to avoid sunburn that encourages insect infestation. Less is better, even with hedge uses.
Litter: Low.
Propagation: Scarified seed.
Uses: Ornamental, shade, xeric garden, hedge, screen.

Very long lived in native environment. A tough plant, but does not regrow if burned in a wildfire, and should not be placed in a wildfire prone area.

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Acacia aneura: Mulga - flower

Acacia aneura: Mulga - seed pod

Acacia aneura: Mulga - leaves

Acacia aneura: Mulga