Cootamundra Wattle (Acacia baileyana)

Photo: (c) John Jennings

Family: Fabaceae/Mimosaceae

Growth Habit: Cootamundra Wattle has fine silvery-grey to blue-green ‘feathery’, bipinnate foliage crowded on the stem. Branchlets have a waxy coating.

Type of plant: Large shrub to small tree up to 10 m high and 6 m across. 

Photo: (c) Daiju Azuma

Flowers: Lots of golden-yellow soft ball-shaped flowers in late winter, early spring.

Fruit/Seeds: Seed pods are flatish, bluish when young turning brown or black when mature.

Dispersal: Seeds are carried by ants, small mammals and humans. Seeds last a very long time in the soil and have a high rate of germination especially after fire or soil disturbance.

Distribution: Native to south west NSW, highly invasive outside its natural region.

Status: Undeclared in Tasmania, but has become a serious environmental weed in Tasmania and other states.

Weed Impact:

  • Environmental weed.
  • “Genetic pollution” by hybridising with other locally native species such as the endangered Downy Wattle (Acacia pubescens), putting it at further risk of extinction..
  • Out competes native Acacia species, reducing local natural diversity.
  • Can form dense stands.

Control Methods:

  • Do not plant in gardens, reserves or properties.
  • Replace with other locally native species.
  • Treat before they seed. Bag and remove any seed pods present.
  • Hand pull seedlings and small plants.
  • Cut stump larger seedlings and plants.
  • Drill and fill larger plants. 

N.B. Always check the herbicide label before use.