Vachellia farnesiana – Mimosa Bush

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Scientific Name
Vachellia farnesiana (L.) Wight & Arn.

Vachellia farnesiana (L.) Wight & Arn.

Common Names
Mimosa Bush, Needle Bush, Cassie, Cassie Flower, Ellington Curse, Fragrant Acacia, Farnese Wattle, Huisache, Ironwood, Mimosa Bush, Opopanax, Prickly, Prickly Moses, Prickly Mimosa, Scented Wattle, Sweet Acacia, Sweet Wattle, Thorny Acacia, Yellow Mimosa, Briar Bush, Dead Finish, Downs Mimosa, False Mesquite, Mimosa Wattle, Perfumed Wattle, Sponge Flower
Mimosa farnesiana (basionym), Acacia farnesiana, Acacia minuta, Acacia smallii, Pithecellobium minutum, Vachellia densiflora
Scientific Classification
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily: Mimosoideae
Tribe: Acacieae
Genus: Vachellia

Color: Yellow to orange
Bloom Time: Autumn through to spring
Vachellia farnesiana is a spreading shrub, up to 9.8 feet (3 m) tall. Branches grow in a zigzag shape and are usually grey-brown with prominent white spots. The yellowish-green to pure green leaves are ferny, with 1-6 pairs of leaf ‘branches’ each with 5-20 pairs of narrow, rounded leaflets, up to 0.3 inch (8 mm) long. Thorns are found in pairs at the base of each leaf and can grow up to 4 inches (10 cm). The golden yellow to orange flowers are ball-shaped, up to 0.4 inch (1 cm) wide and grow on stalks. Flowering occurs throughout the year, but is most abundant from autumn through to spring.

How to Grow and Care
Acacia requires full sunlight and grows in nearly any type of soil, including sand, clay, or soil that is highly alkaline or acidic. Although Acacia prefers well-drained soil, it tolerates muddy soil for short periods of time. Acacia is basically a plant-it-and-forget-it type of tree, although a young tree may need protection from wildlife while it develops its defense system. During the first year, the tree benefits from an orchid fertilizer every three to four weeks. After that time, you can feed the tree a general purpose fertilizer once every year, but it isn’t an absolute requirement. Acacia requires little or no water.
Acacia may need occasional pruning during the dry months. Avoid pruning leafy, green areas and trim only dead growth.
Although the tree is disease-resistant, it can sometimes be affected by a fungal disease known as anthracnose. Additionally, watch for pests such as aphids, thrips, mites and scale.
Native to southern United States, Mexico, Central America, the Caribbean and northern South America.
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