Sally Wattle

    (Acacia salicina)


Also known as: Black wattle, Cooba, Doolan, Broughton willow

  Sally Wattle is one of the most common trees on the Highlands and it grows to about 12m high with a trunk up to about 1m thick. On good soil and water it can look a bit like an English Willow tree. It rarely grows straight, tending to twist and bend, but occasionally good straight logs are found.
Much faster growing than most of the acacias around here, the timber is lighter and more open grained but very colourful. It has a lot of movement while drying but splitting can be kept to a minimum by sealing the end grain.
Cutting and sealing some turning blanks.
Freshly cut slab wetted down to show off the colour.
Sally wattle pops up in gardens and on fencelines everywhere. We felled this one for a friend as the approaching developers would only have taken it to the dump. Only one section worth keeping as we already have heaps. 
Yours truly with the biggest, straightest Sally trunk we've come across. This one will be sawn with the Lucas mill for furniture making.
Sally wattle timber looks and works very much like Blackwood for the southerners reading this - we like to have our own version of everything up here! It machines and sands very well but soaks up a lot of finish - almost tempted to use sanding sealer on it at times.
I've been told that Sally Wattle was once harvested for it's high tannin content and the small bowl here is testament to this! The outside and inner rim was blackened with 'Liquid Nightmare', a vinegar and steel-wool solution that reacts with the tannin to turn it black, and it doesn't get any blacker than Sally Wattle!
I turned this bowl from a piece of beautifully figured Sally wattle root given to me by another member of the Emerald woodworkers group (thanks Barry!)
I've started using Livos 'Kunos' oil on most of my work and Sally Wattle takes to it beautifully as on this bowl turned from a very fast-grown specimen.


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