Distribution patterns of Acacia saligna are quite diverse in South Africa especially taking under consideration that they do not have immediate threats that inhibit their spread. However, this species occurs in very different environmental gradients, as it can occur from a wet habitat/area to a bare rock surface that is a very dry habitat. Due to such observations for the distribution of this species a question is imposed in this paper as to how do traits vary along environmental gradients? Two phenotypic traits/characteristics are investigated, Specific Leaf Area (SLA) and wood-density. SLA was calculated by adding the total sum of all the leaf area per individual and dividing that with the total sum of all the leaf dry mass per individual. SLA = Total leaf area/ Dry leaf mass, SLA unit g/cm². The highest value for SLA is at the dry site, intermediate in wet site and lowest in the ultra-dry site. The wood-density for branch and stem samples was calculated using the latest dry mass value/ volume. Wood-density unit measure is g/cm³. The stem wood-density was highest at the ultra-dry site, followed by wet site and then the dry site. Branch wood-density was highest at the dry site, intermediate at ultra-dry site and lowest at the wet site.
Introduction Acacia saligna is a small tree endemic to the Swan Coastal plain in the Mediterranean climate region of south-west Australia and is widely naturalized in Mediterranean-type ecosystems throughout the world (Tozer and