Acacia Leaves
Purple AcaciaPurple Acacia
Arbutus Marina

Like most acacias, baileyana can reseed freely and is on the California Invasive Plant Species List. A. baileyana has spread all over Fort Ord and can be seen happily waving its yellow pollen fronds everywhere in the spring. For this reason CAUTION is advised—think twice before you plant!

That said this showy purple acacia is very fast growing and tough. The mauve to silvery gray foliage is stunning and the feathery texture adds much to a landscape. Profuse, fragrant yellow blooms (which some have allergies too) appear in the early part of the season. If purple is not your color, the plain baileyana has gray green foliage and grows to the same form.

Drought tolerant, frost hardy and disease resistant once established. Baileyana 'Purpurea' spreads out a wide canopy and is easily shaped as a patio or street tree. It is lovely when left as a multi-trunk form as well. Some shearing is recommended to keep purple coloring in the new growth. Perhaps its only failing (besides reseeding freely EVERYWHERE) is that acacias can be short lived - around 30 years.

Maximum height
20-30 feet high
20-40 feet wide

Life Span
30+ years

Criteria for Ranking

1 (low) - 5 (high)

Drought Tolerance after first year establishment 5
Wind Tolerance 4*
Frost Tolerance 4
Surface Roots/Sidewalk Lifting 4
Power Lines Proximity

5 (good choice)
Cost/Maintenance 3*
Disease Resistance/Hardiness 5
*note asterisk denote species will be shaped by a prevailing wind. Single trunk trained trees need more protection than multi-trunk to grow straight.
**note asterisk denote species as a single trunk trained tree will need more trimming to control sucker growth. It will grow fast and need trimming if not given enough room.
Location A 'Purpurea' is visible in the empty lot next to the county health offices on De Forest.