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acacia(əkā`shə), any plant of the large leguminous genus Acacia, often thorny shrubs and trees of the family Leguminosae (pulsepulse,
in botany, common name for members of the Fabaceae (Leguminosae), a large plant family, called also the pea, or legume, family. Numbering about 650 genera and 17,000 species, the family is third largest, after the asters and the orchids.
..... Click the link for more information. family). Chiefly of the tropics and subtropics, they are cultivated for decorative and economic purposes. Acacias are characteristic of savanna vegetation and are especially numerous in the South African bushveld. The foliage often appears feathery because of the many small leaflets, but in some species leaflike flattened stems contain chlorophyll and take the place of leaves. Various Old World species (especially A. arabica and A. senegal ) yield gum arabic; other species, chiefly A. catechu, yield the dye catechucatechu
extract from the heartwood of Acacia catechu, a leguminous tree of the pulse family, native to India and Myanmar. Catechu is a fast brown dye used for various shades of brown and olive, including the familiar khaki, and also in tanning.
..... Click the link for more information. . Blackwood (A. melanoxylon) is valued in Australia for its hardwood timber. Other members of the genus are valuable for laclac,
resinous exudation from the bodies of females of a species of scale insect (Tachardia lacca), from which shellac is prepared. India is the chief source of shellac, although some is obtained from other areas in Southeast Asia.
..... Click the link for more information. , for perfume and essential oils, and for tannins; some are used as ornamentals. The Australian acacias are commonly called wattles—their pliable branches were woven into the structure of the early wattle houses and fences—and Wattle Day celebrates the national flower at blossoming time. Many wattles are cultivated elsewhere, particularly in California, as ornamentals for their characteristic spherical, dense flowers. The Central American bullhorn acacias (e.g., A. sphaerocephala) have large hollow thorns inhabited by ants that are said to feed upon a sweet secretion of the plant and in turn guard it against leaf-eating insects. The most common acacia indigenous to the United States is the cat's-claw (A. gregii) of the arid Southwest. The biblical shittim woodshittim wood,
in the Bible, wood of the shittah tree, probably an acacia, from which the Ark of the Covenant and furniture of the Tabernacle were made. The Revised Version of the Bible calls it acacia wood. It seems to have been held in high esteem.
..... Click the link for more information. is thought to have come from an acacia. Various species of locust are sometimes called acacia, and acacias may be called mimosa; all are of the same family. Acacia is classified in the division MagnoliophytaMagnoliophyta
, division of the plant kingdom consisting of those organisms commonly called the flowering plants, or angiosperms. The angiosperms have leaves, stems, and roots, and vascular, or conducting, tissue (xylem and phloem).
..... Click the link for more information. , class Magnoliopsida, order Rosales, family Leguminosae.
genus of mostly woody plants of the family Mimosaceae. About 750 tropical and subtropical species are found in both hemispheres but mostly (over 50 percent) in Australia, where it is the national emblem, and in Africa.
Acacia leaves are bipinnate, generally with numerous tiny leaves. In many species, chiefly Australian, the leaf blade fails to develop completely or partly, in which case the expanded petiole (the so-called phyllode) fulfills the function of photosynthesis. Other acacias are characterized by the presence of stipules changed into spines. In the American species A. sphaerocephala and A. costaricensis, in the African species A. drepanolobium, and in some others, the spines are very large and infested with ants. Acacia usually has small yellow or white flowers noticeable chiefly because of the numerous stamens protruding far from the corolla; these flowers are in dense clusters or spiciform inflorescences which are arranged, in turn, in a compound, mostly paniculate inflorescence. The fruit is a bicuspid or indehiscent pod. Acacia with an umbellate crown is a characteristic landscape element of African savannas. Many species are of considerable economic importance. Some are rapidly growing trees, and others produce valuable wood—for example, the Australian A. melanoxylon. The finest gum arabic comes from, A. Senegal and other species. The tanning agent catechu is extracted from the wood of A. catechu. A. dealbata is cultivated in the south as an ornamental plant. Cut flowering branches (so-called mimosa) are brought into cities of the temperate zone from January to March. A tree of the genus Albizzia is known as the silk acacia. “White” or “false” acacia is the name of a tree of the genus Robinia. Yellow acacia (pea tree) is a shrub of the genus Caragana.
REFERENCESDerev’ia i kustarniki SSSR. Moscow-Leningrad, 1958.
Willis, J. C. A Dictionary of the Flowering Plants and Ferns, 7th ed. Cambridge, 1966.
Uphof, J. C. T. Dictionary of Economic Plants, 2nd ed. Würzburg, 1968.
M. E. KIRPICHNIKOV
gum arabic, acacia, gum acacia
Acacia(Acacia Technologies, Lisle, IL) A former business unit of Computer Associates (CA) whose product line was sold to SSA Global Technologies, Inc. in 2002. Its primary products, PRMS, KBM and Warehouse BOSS continue to be offered as part of SSA's enterprise platform.
Acacia was created primarily from CA's acquisition of Pansophic Systems in 1991, and in 1999, CA merged Acacia with the MK Group to become the interBiz Supply Chain Group within the interBiz Solution division of the company. SSA acquired the supply chain management, financial management and human resource management product lines of interBiz, which made up the eBusiness applications division of CA. For more information, visit www.ssaglobal.com. See PRMS.