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It is a shrub or small to medium-sized tree which grows to height of 12m. It is difficult to tell apart from Acacia nilotica subsp. adstringens without examining the seed pods. It is not listed as being a threatened species.
Common names in various languages include Cape Gum, Cassie, Piquants Blancs, Cassie Piquants Blancs, Cockspur Thorn, Deo-Babool, Doorn Boom, Kaludai, Karroo Thorn, Kikar, Mormati, Pahari Kikar, Pahari Kikar and Udai Vel.
Additional recommended knowledge
It is a tree of open woodland and wooded grassland. It grows to its greatest size when rainfall of 800-900mm is received but can grow and even thrive in very dry conditions such as the Karroo region of western South Africa. The requirement here is for deep soils that allow its roots to spread. Everywhere in its range, however, the tree is easily recognised by its distinctive long white paired thorns and coffee coloured bark, both of which are very attractive. In the tropics it shows little variation but at the southern end of its range it becomes more variable in appearance.
A. karoo is used for chemical products, forage, domestic uses, environmental management, fibre, food, drink, and wood. It is widely cultivated in Asia, Australia, the Mediterranean region, India and the Indian Ocean area. The large thorns mean that the tree must be approached, and the branches handled, carefully.
An edible gum seeps from cracks in the tree's bark. The gum can be used to manufacture candy and it used to have economic importance as "Cape Gum". In dry areas, the tree's presence is a sign of water, both above and underground. 
Forage and fodder
The tree is especially useful as forage and fodder for domestic and wild animals. Apparently, there is no risk of poisoning from it. Goats seem to like A. karoo better than cattle. The small pom-pom shaped yellow flowers are attractive in mid-summer. The flowers make it a very good source of forage for honey bees; honey from it has a pleasant taste.
Wood and bark
|This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Acacia_karroo". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.|