There are 1300 species of acacia worldwide. This herb is a shrub or tree that is native to Australia, Europe, Africa, Asia, South and North America. Acacia is also known as thorntrees, wattles, or whistling thorns. The American species is called "Black Locust" or "false acacia." This species is cultivated in the United Kingdom. This plant has many uses such as in culinary, medicine, and ornamental.
In traditional medicine, acacia is very important. In Ayurvedic medicine this herb is usefl in treating premature ejaculation. In Africa the roots of this plant was used in treating rabies. Acacia is known to have astringent properties. Extract is derived from the root. Some species are grown for ornamental purposes. In some regions of the world, the acacia seeds are used for food. In Thailand, the young shoots of the plant are mixed in soups, omelettes, and stirfry. Honey is made from the flower of the acacia plant. Acacia honey does not crystallize. Acacia is an ingredient in many drinks in the United States such as Fresca, RC Cola, Barq's root beer, Full Throttle, Powerade, and Altoids mints candy. In ancient Egypt, acacia was used for painting.
This herb has a strong fragrance and is often used in making some perfumes. This herb dates back many centuries and it is mentioned in the Bible several times. In Freemasonry this herb stands as a symbol of purity and endurance of the soul. The bark, root, and resin of this plant are used in making incense for rituals. When acacia bark is burned it is believed to keep demons and ghosts away. There is an alcoholic beverage that is mde from the acacia fruit. It is believed that this plant may have been the "burning bush" as spoken of in the Bible. God said, "make an arc od acacia wood" and "make a table of acacia wood.:" The wood of this tree is considered to be a valuable timber. In some regions of the world the wood is used for firewood. This tree is useful to land because it helps in erosion control. The acacia is known worldwide and in some regions it is considered to be an invasive species.
This tree contains many organic compounds. In humans these compounds are psychoactive. It also contains alkaloids. In Egypt, this tree is believed to be associated with the tree of life. Some species are known to contain properties of amphetamines and nicotine. Some species in the Americas can release a substance from the leaves if exposed to an enzyme woujld release hydrogen cyanide. This would be toxic. Some species are known to contain psychedelic drugs and are used for religious ceremonies.