Gum Arabic, Three-thorned Acacia

Acacia senegal

Family: Mimosaceae
Genus: Acacia (a-KAY-see-uh) (Info)
Species: senegal




Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)

20-30 ft. (6-9 m)

30-40 ft. (9-12 m)

over 40 ft. (12 m)


15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)


USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade

Light Shade


Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction

Plant has spines or sharp edges; use extreme caution when handling

Pollen may cause allergic reaction

Bloom Color:

Gold (Yellow-Orange)

White/Near White


Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer


Grown for foliage


Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

5.1 to 5.5 (strongly acidic)

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

7.9 to 8.5 (alkaline)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:

Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

Gardeners' Notes:


On Feb 3, 2005, htop from San Antonio, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

I have not grown this plant. It is native to tropical Africa from Mozambique, Zambia to Somalia, Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, and Tanzania. It is also cultivated in India, Nigeria, and Pakistan. It thrive in sandy slightly alkaline soils. It provides shelters and shade for the animals of the savanna as well as food for antelopes, giraffes and elephants all of whom eat eat its leaves. Birds make their nests in its branches because of the protection from predators that the thorns provide them.

Plants can also be propagated by shoot cuttings. Acacia senegal is grown for gum, but it is also used for restoring soil fertility and providing fuel and fodder. Although it is nontoxic when ingested it can cause severe asthmatic attacks in some people who are allergic to its dust. Skin lesio... read more