Work trees (Acacia auriculiformis) were used as a pioneer species in Auroville's reforestation work . They produce an enormous amount of biomass, provide a place for birds to sit, and create a micro-environment on the ground. They can be used to start a cycle of succession toward a more mature forest. Work trees have shallow roots, which can be seen as an advantage: a cyclone can uproot them relatively easily and in doing so hasten the dominance of indigenous forest species.
Work trees provide what is considered good firewood, and its seeds are edible.