- Small shrub or tree.
- Size: usually 3-8m high
- Leaves: has phyllodes (flattened leaf stalks) that are pinnate (arranged opposite each other on either side of the stem) and sickle-shaped 9-15cm long and 1-3.5cm wide; branchlets on leaves are hairy, sometimes covered in white powdery granules.
- Flowers: Bright golden and sometimes lemon-yellow ball-shaped inflorescences (clusters flowers arranged on a stem). Flowers appear in late winter and spring and into early summer (July to November).
- Fruits/seeds: long seed pods are more or less oblong, 5.5-6cm long, seeds somewhat shiny, black and club-shaped.
What to Observe
- First fully open single flower (each ‘flower ball’ is actually a cluster of 40-80 flowers!)
- Full flowering (record all days)
- End of flowering (when 95% of the flowers have faded)
- No flowering
- Open Seed pods (record all days)
ClimateWatch Science Advisor
The Golden Wattle is expected to alter its shooting and flowering periods as a result of climate change impacting temperature and rainfall. They may also start appearing in new areas, as climate change enables them to live in environments that were previously unsuitable for them. Help scientists answer the question: "How are our animals, plants and ecosystems responding to climate change?"
When To Look
- From autumn throughout spring and early summer
- Flowers appear from July to November
- Seed pods appear after flowers
Note: ClimateWatch is looking for any changes in the timing of these events so remember to keep a lookout from late February!
Where To Look
In the understorey of open forest or woodland and in open scrub formations in South Australia, Victoria, New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory.
Note: ClimateWatch is looking for any changes outside of their known ranges so remember to keep a lookout beyond these regions too!
Did You Know?
- It was made the official floral emblem of Australia in 1988
- A flower in an inflorescence, like Golden Wattle flowers, are referred to as ‘florets’
- The specific name pycnantha from the Greek 'pyknos', meaning 'dense', and 'anthos', meaning 'a flower', refers to the dense clusters of flowers.