Purple fernleaf acacia, known as a Cootamundra wattle in Australia, is Acacia baileyana 'Purpurea'. This tree has it all, almost. It is evergreen, fast-growing, of a size that can fit most any garden, tolerates drought and poor soils, is heat and salt air tolerant, and in addition to all of these practical assets, it's beautiful. The only thing a Purple fernleaf acacia lacks is cold tolerance - it simply will not work in frigid winters. It can take some cold but not much below 20 degrees Fahrenheit. But if you live in an area where winters are mild, then this tree is a must.
Purple fernleaf acacia received the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit in 1993, and it's easy to see why. It has an acacia's beautiful silvery foliage, but what sets it apart is the purple new growth. Combine the bluish-silver with the purple and the effect is a French lavender that is utterly unique to trees. The foliage alone is reason enough to grow this tree, but it also bears clusters of fragrant bright golden flowers in late winter through early spring. Finally the Purple fernleaf acacia, which will only grow 20 to 25 feet tall and with similar width, has a gracefully pendulous form. 
It requires full sun to filtered shade and once established it is frost and drought tolerant. It will thrive in acid soil, or dry climates as it has low water requirements. It works as a specimen, a fast growing screen, or at the back of the border. It will thrive across the southern half of the US, the warmer parts of the UK and New Zealand, and is particularly well suited to Australia, to which it is native.

Other notable acacias are Silver wattle or Acacia dealbata and Weeping acacia or Acacia pendula.

Purpleleaf acacia


Trees for:  Acid soils     Clay soils      Poor soils      Seashore      Dry soils     Cold soils      Wet soils     Alkaline soilsTrees_for_acid_soils.htmlTrees_for_clay_soils.htmlTrees_for_poor_soils.htmlTrees_for_seashore.htmlTrees_for_dry_soils.htmlTrees_for_Cold-exposed_areas.htmlTrees_for_wet_soils.htmlTrees_for_alkaline_soils.htmlshapeimage_4_link_0shapeimage_4_link_1shapeimage_4_link_2shapeimage_4_link_3shapeimage_4_link_4shapeimage_4_link_5shapeimage_4_link_6shapeimage_4_link_7
Trees by size                               Special features                                Forms of treesTrees_by_size.htmlSpecial_features.htmlForms_of_trees.htmlshapeimage_5_link_0shapeimage_5_link_1shapeimage_5_link_2