Classification of the genus Acacia (in the wider sense) has been subject to considerable debate. It is generally agreed that there are valid reasons for breaking it up into several distinct genera, but there has been disagreement over the way this should be done. As of 2017, it is widely (but not completely) accepted that the section that includes the majority of the Australian species should retain the name Acacia, whilst other sections of the genus should be transferred to other genera. This species is transferred to Vachellia[
Acacia goeringii Schinz
Acacia luederitzii Engl.
Vachellia luederitzii is a small shrub branching from near the base or, more commonly, a tree with a crown that can be flattened and spreading, or more or less rounded; it can grow up to 15 metres tall. The bole is generally 15 - 30cm in diameter, though specimens up to 75cm have been recorded. The bark is very rough, longitudinally fissured on old trunks[
The tree is harvested from the wild for local use. Best known as a source of quivers, the tree also provides a useful fibre and an edible gum.
Especially in times of drought, many Acacia species can concentrate high levels of the toxin Hydrogen cyanide in their foliage, making them dangerous for herbivores to eat.
Southern Africa - Namibia, southern Zambia, Zimbabwe, southern Mozambique, S. Africa.
Tree savannah, bush, scrub, thornveld, often associated with Acacia erioloba and other Acacia spp., particularly on Kalahari sand; often forming dense impenetrable thickets; at elevations from 700 - 1,070 metres[
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This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil bacteria; these bacteria form nodules on the roots and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby[
A reddish-brown gum obained from the stems is eaten[
An infusion of the bark is used as an emetic to cleanse the body as part of the treatment of various diseases[
The bark of all Acacia species contains greater or lesser quantities of tannins and are astringent. Astringents are often used medicinally - taken internally, for example. they are used in the treatment of diarrhoea and dysentery, and can also be helpful in cases of internal bleeding. Applied externally, often as a wash, they are used to treat wounds and other skin problems, haemorrhoids, perspiring feet, some eye problems, as a mouth wash etc[
Many Acacia trees also yield greater or lesser quantities of a gum from the trunk and stems. This is sometimes taken internally in the treatment of diarrhoea and haemorrhoids[
A fibre is obtained from the inner bark[
]. Fine cords can be made from it and are used for necklaces etc[
]. Unprocessed, broad strips of the inner bark are used for attaching thatch on traditional huts[
The root of this tree is traditionally used to make quivers for arrows[
]. A piece of wood about 40 - 60cm long is placed in the spent ashes of a warm fire and left overnight. The next morning, a short section of the bark of the root is removed at one end; a circular groove is carved into the exposed core wood; a piece of wire is wound around the groove at one end whist the other end is attached to a tree; the bark (having already been loosened from the wood by the drying action of the warm ashes) is then simply pulled whole off the root[
]. The core of wood remaining is then often used as a pestle[
The brown wood is hard, heavy, tough and fire-resistant. It is easy to work and produces a fine, smooth finish. Very durable in water, it is used to line wells, and also makes good fencing posts[
The seed of most, if not all, members of this genus has a hard seedcoat and may benefit from scarification before sowing to speed up germination. This can usually be done by pouring a small amount of nearly boiling water on the seeds (being careful not to cook them!) and then soaking them for 12 - 24 hours in warm water. By this time they should have imbibed moisture and swollen - if they have not, then carefully make a nick in the seedcoat (being careful not to damage the embryo) and soak for a further 12 hours before sowing.
Acacia seeds that have matured fully on the bush and have been properly dried have a hard seed coat and can be stored in closed containers without deterioration for 5 - 10 years or more in dry conditions at ambient temperatures. It is best to remove the aril, which attracts weevils and can lead to moulds forming. The arils are easilyremoved by placing the seeds in water and rubbing them between the hands, then drying the seeds and winnowing them[
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