Galled and still giving: the marvelous Lightwood

Galled and still giving: the marvelous Lightwood

Posted: 20 August 2020

Acacia Implexa, commonly known as Lightwood or Hickory Wattle, is a local wattle that just keeps on giving. Loved by gardeners for its longevity, delicate small tree-like structure, pale flowers and light shade, this plant is also excellent habitat.

One of the features of Lightwood is the galls formed by fungus which often hang in strange fruit-like bunches. The tree is a haven for insects, producing pollen for pollinators when other wattles have finished flowering, attracting gall-wasps to its flower buds, and beetles and grubs to it's bark. Insects in turn attract insect-eating birds including the Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike, while seeds and pods attract parrots and native pigeons. 

Lightwoods are common in our region. Look out for their fluffy pale yellow flowers from December to March, and note the abundance of native creatures that flock to this particularly beautiful wattle.

See photos of Lightwoods on the Friends of Chiltern Mt Pilot National Park's page here.