Balls and Rods: The Acacias (or Wattles) are prominent throughout the Australian bush and in gardens during spring. Their bright yellow flowers lift spirits after winter. Acacia blooms are composed of a number of individual flowers. Depending on the species, their heads may have a few individual flowers to dozens of flowers. The flower heads (depending once again on species) may be ball or rod-shaped. Most species have ball-shaped flower heads. Of the 217 species native to New South Wales, 25% have rod-shaped flower heads.
The ball-shaped species illustrated is Acacia mabellae from Southern New South Wales whilst the rod-shaped specimen is Acacia pycnostachya a rare wattle from Northern New South Wales.