Vachellia farnesiana var. farnesiana

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Acacia smallii 4.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Fabales
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily: Mimosoideae
Tribe: Acacieae
Genus: Vachellia
Species: V. farnesiana
Variety: V. f. var. farnesiana
Trinomial name
Vachellia farnesiana var. farnesiana
(L.) Willd.
  • Acacia farnesiana var. farnesiana
  • Acacia densiflora (Small) Cory
  • Acacia ferox M.Martens & Galeotti
  • Acacia minuta subsp. densiflora (Alexander ex Small) R.M.Beauch.[1]
  • Acacia pedunculata Willd.
  • Acacia smallii Isely[2]
  • Vachellia densiflora Small
  • Cassie-oil plant
  • Huisache
  • Opopanax
  • Popinac
  • Sponge tree
  • West Indian Blackthorn[3]

Vachellia farnesiana var. farnesiana (Huisache or sweet acacia) is a species of shrub or small tree in the legume family, Fabaceae. It is native to the Americas, including the Southern United States, Mexico, and the Neotropics. V. f. var. farnesiana has been planted throughout the world, and is often considered a weed.[4] The name huisache is derived from Nahuatl and means "many thorns,"[5] as the base of each leaf is accompanied by a pair of thorns on the branch.[6] It reaches a height of 15–30 feet (4.6–9.1 m) and grows multiple trunks.[5] Deer and peccaries eat its fruit, various birds use the plant for nesting and cover, and insects eat the nectar from its flowers. If disturbed, Huisache will readily resprout. This drought-tolerant species is often used in xeriscaping.[6]

It exudes a gum which is sometimes collected. The flowers distill a perfume which has been described as "delicious".[3]


  1. ^ "Acacia minuta ssp. densiflora (Alexander ex Small) Beauchamp". ITIS Reports. Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 2009-06-30. 
  2. ^ "Acacia smallii". LegumeWeb. International Legume Database & Information Service. Retrieved 2008-05-15. 
  3. ^ a b Sturtevant's notes on edible plants. 1919. p. 19. 
  4. ^ James C. Hickman, ed. (1993). The Jepson Manual: Higher Plants of California. University of California Press. p. 582. 
  5. ^ a b "Acacia farnesiana (L.) Willd.". Native Plant Database. Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center. Retrieved 2009-06-30. 
  6. ^ a b "Sweet Acacia (Acacia farnesiana)". Native Plants of South Texas. Texas AgriLife Research and Extension. Retrieved 2009-06-30. 

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