Alice Springs Desert Park

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The Waddy-wood (Acacia peuce) is an endemic tree to Central Australia. It is one of Australia’s rarest trees existing in only three locations in Simpson Desert, Queensland and Northern Territory.

The Acacia peuce, also known as waddy-wood, are found on the western and eastern edges of the Simpson Desert, in Birdsville and Boulia in Queensland and on Andado Station (230 km south-east of Alice Springs) in the Northern Territory (NT).

At Andado and Birdsville, A. peuce populations are associated with shallow sand aprons overlaying clayey and gibber slopes and plains. The Boulia population is associated with palaeochannels of the Hamilton and Georgina Rivers (Maslin 2001). The Northern Territory population is the smallest of the three. There are also some fine examples of the species in the Alice Springs Desert Park.

Acacia peuce is a long lived, tall tree to c. 15-18 m with short horizontal branches, pendulous branchlets and Sheoak-like phyllodes (Maslin 2001). The bark is grey brown and fibrous, and the timber is very dense with dark red heart-wood. The pale yellow flowers are solitary and inconspicuous; and the distinctive pods are large (up to 5 x 20 cm), papery and flattened. The seeds are flat and large (6–14 mm long, 4–8.5 mm wide). They lack features to enhance dispersal, being dull, dark brown to black and exarillate (Maslin 2001).

The tree flowers and fruit any time with rain.

Acacia peuce is a long lived, tall tree to c. 15-18 m with short horizontal branches, pendulous branchlets and Sheoak-like phyllodes (Maslin 2001). The bark is greybrown and fibrous, and the timber is very dense with dark red heart-wood. The pale yellow flowers are solitary and inconspicuous; and the distinctive pods are large (up to 5×20 cm), papery and flattened. The seeds are flat and large (6–14 mm long, 4–8.5 mm wide). They lack features to enhance dispersal, being dull, dark brown to black and exarillate (Maslin 2001).

Acacia peuce – Northern Territory Government

Common name
Birdsville Wattle, waddy, waddi, or waddy-wood. The Arunda people know the tree as Aratara, the Pitta Pitta know it as Kurriyapiri and Red Ochre Father while the Arrernte know it as Arripar.

Visitors to Alice Springs can also see the Waddy-wood at the Mac Clarke Conservation Reserve, NT at Andado Station via the Binns Track.


  • Scientific classification
  • Kingdom: Plantae
  • Clade: Tracheophytes
  • Clade: Angiosperms
  • Clade: Eudicots
  • Clade: Rosids
  • Order: Fabales
  • Family: Fabaceae
  • Clade: Mimosoideae
  • Genus: Acacia
  • Species: A. peuce
  • Binomial name: Acacia peuce

Footnote & References

  1. Acacia peuce – Northern Territory Government, https://nt.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0017/208403/acacia-peuce.pdf
  2. Australia’s loneliest tree finds some friends, by Caddie Brain, ABC News, 7 June 2013, https://www.abc.net.au/news/rural/2013-05-28/acacia-peuce-tree-simpson/4717284?nw=0