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a genus of trees and shrubs of the family Mimosaceae. The leaves are bipinnately compound, and the flowers have an inconspicuous corolla and numerous long, more or less brightly colored stamen threads. The racemes are globular or cylindrical. There are approximately 125 species in the tropics and subtropics, mainly in the eastern hemisphere. Some species have valuable wood and bark, rich with tannins or saponins. A. falcata grows to a height of 20 m in four years and is thus used in the tropics for street plantings. In the USSR, one species, the so-called silk acacia (A. julibrissin), is found in the forests of the Talyshskie Mountains in southern Azerbaijan; this species is cultivated for decorative purposes in the Crimea, the Caucasus, Middle Asia, and the southern parts of Western Europe.