Herb: Mimosa

Latin name: Acacia dealbata

Synonyms: Acacia decurrens dealbata

Family: Leguminosae

Edible parts of Mimosa:

Flowers - cooked. Rich in pollen, they are often used in fritters. A gum that exudes naturally from the trunk is edible and is used as a substitute for Gum Arabic. It is very soluble in water and viscous, but is of low quality. Larger quantities can be obtained by tapping the trunk. Some species produce a gum that is dark and is liable to be astringent and distasteful, but others produce a light gum and this is sweet and pleasant. It can be sucked like candy or soaked in water to make a jelly. The gum can be warmed when it becomes soft and chewable.

Description of the plant:


25 m
(82 feet)

January to


Habitat of the herb:

In many habitats by streams, gullies and alpine ridges. Dry forests.

Other uses of Mimosa:

A yellow dye is obtained from the flowers. A green dye is obtained from the seed pods. The extensive root system of this plant helps to prevent soil erosion. Tannin is obtained from the bark. On a 10% moisture basis, the bark contains 19.1% tannin.

Propagation of the herb:

Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a sunny position in a warm greenhouse. Stored seed should be scarified, pre-soaked for 12 hours in warm water and then sown in a warm greenhouse in March. The seed germinates in 3 - 4 weeks at 25C. As soon as the seedlings are large enough to handle, prick them out into individual pots and grow them on in a sunny position in the greenhouse for their first winter. Plant them out in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts, and consider giving them some protection from the cold for their first winter outdoors. Cuttings of half-ripe wood with a heel, July/August in individual pots in a frame. Overwinter in a greenhouse for the first winter and plant out in their permanent positions in late spring or early summer. Fair percentage.

Cultivation of Mimosa:

In many habitats by streams, gullies and alpine ridges. Dry forests.

Medicinal use of the herb:

None known

Known hazards of Acacia dealbata:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.