Acacia confusa Merr.
Formosan koa

This evergreen tree is prized by many for its brilliant display of bright yellow, mimosoid flowers and its ability to grow in poor, dry soils. It reaches heights of 15 m and shades out most other plants. The small seeds are passively dispersed. Man has been the principal disseminator through aerial broadcasting. The leaves are apparently allelopathic since the ground underneath these trees is barren weeds, e.g., Stachytarpheta jamaicensis (L.) Vahl (Jamaica vervain). The plant except for a few alien is essentially fire resistant because fire will not carry under the tree due to the lack of fuel. Aerial portions which are only scorched will resprout rapidly. No evaluation of potential for biological control has been made.

It thrives between sea level and 700 m elevation in dry and mesic habitats. Major infestations are found on the windward side and Wai'anae Mountains, O'ahu, and the north shore of East Maui.

Home Page