R. pseudoacacia is described as a leguminous deciduous tree that grows from 30 to 80 feet tall. Young saplings have smooth, green bark; older trees have deep, furrowed, shaggy, dark bark with flat-topped ridges. Leaves are alternate and pinnately compound with 7 to 21 leaflets. Leaflets are thin, elliptical, dark green above, and pale beneath. Flowers are pea-like, fragrant, white to yellow, and born in large, drooping racemes. Seed pods are shiny, smooth, narrow, flat, 5cms to 10cms long, and contain 4 to 8 seeds (DNR, 2003). Smaller branches are armed with a pair of setaceous stipules, or stipular spines, that occur at the base of each petiole. These stipular spines are very pronounced on resprouts, and make working among these plants somewhat hazardous (Gover, pers. comm., 2004).
According to Converse (1984), R. pseudoacacia is a good seed producer, with heavy seed crops at 1- or 2- year intervals and light crops in the intervening years. Best seed crops occur when the trees are between 15 and 40 years of age, but some trees will bear at 6 years and some as late as 60 years.
DNR (2003) states that the wood of R. pseudoacacia is valued for its durability and high fuel value, and the tree also provides good forage for bees. R. pseudoacacia is planted on reclaimed land to control erosion and has been used for ornamental purposes.
R. pseudoacacia is an early successional plant, preferring full sun, well drained soils, and little competition. It invades dry and sand prairies, oak savannas, and upland forest edges. R. pseudoacacia is commonly found in disturbed areas such as old fields, degraded woods, and roadsides (Weiseler, 1998).
According to OPLIN (2001), R. pseudoacacia is planted on reclaimed land and to control erosion.According to OPLIN (2001), R. pseudoacacia has been used for ornamental purposes.
Principal source: Black Locust (Wieseler, 1998)
Compiler: National Biological Information Infrastructure (NBII) & IUCN/SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG)
Review: Art Gover, PENNDOT Roadside Vegetation Management Project. Department of Horticulture, The Pennsylvania State University USA
Publication date: 2005-06-17
Recommended citation: Global Invasive Species Database (2016) Species profile: Robinia pseudoacacia. Downloaded from http://www.iucngisd.org/gisd/species.php?sc=572 on 03-12-2016.