bristly locust USDA PLANTS Symbol: ROHI
U.S. Nativity: Exotic
Habit: Hardwood Trees Shrub or Subshrub
Robinia hispida L.

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Taxonomic Rank: Magnoliopsida: Fabales: Fabaceae (Leguminosae)
Native Range: U.S.-southeast (GRIN);

Robinia hispida is a deciduous shrub, to 8 ft. The multiple stems are erect and covered with dense bristles. Caution: All parts of this plant are poisonous. It is native to the southeastern United States.
The alternate, pinnately compound leaves have 7 - 19 leaflets about 1.5-2 in. long. They are densely hairy with smooth edges. Most leaves have a pair of long spines at their base.
The dark to light pink pea like flowers are clustered in the leaf axils. The flowers bloom from May through June.
The thin seed pods are 2-4 in. long and densely covered with bristly hairs.
Ecological Threat
Robinia hispida was planted for erosion control and can be found in disturbed areas such as old fields and along roadsides. It prefers full sun.

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Plant(s); Robinia hispida; rose acacia
Richard Webb, ,
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Flower(s); foliage
Robert Vidéki, Doronicum Kft.,
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Robert Vidéki, Doronicum Kft.,
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Structure; stick; bud
Robert Vidéki, Doronicum Kft.,
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EDDMapS Distribution:
This map is incomplete and is based only on current site and county level reports made by experts and records obtained from USDA Plants Database. For more information, visit

State(s) Where Reported invasive.
Based on state level agency and organization lists of invasive plants from WeedUS database.

Invasive Listing Sources:
City of Ann Arbor Michigan Parks and Recreation
John Randall, The Nature Conservancy, Survey of TNC Preserves, 1995.
Mid-Atlantic Exotic Pest Plant Council, 2005
New Jersey Department of Agriculture, Division of Plant Industry, 2004
Pennypack Ecological Restoration Trust, Pennsylvania.
Reichard, Sarah. 1994.  Assessing the potential of invasiveness in woody plants introduced in North America. University of Washington Ph.D. dissertation.