Scotts Head, NSW

Urunga, NSW

Natural populations

Casuarina glauca is a coastal species extending from southern coastal New South Wales, to north of Gladstone, Queensland [1,2]. Its most inland occurrence is in the Singleton area (about 80 km inland). Casuarina glauca is a tree up to 20 m tall with a well-developed lateral root system, which often forms vigorous root suckers. This species often fringes estuaries and is usually found on alluvial, acidic soils that are saline [1,2].

Flowering and seeds

Flowers usually appear during September to October [3,4]; cones persist on trees for at least one season. There are about 450 viable seeds per gram; seeds start to germinate in about 5 days if grown at 25°C with no pretreatment required [4].

Cultivation and uses

Casuarina glauca is a fast growing, nitrogen-fixing tree with excellent potential to remediate discharge areas affected by salinity and seasonally waterlogging [5]. This species has a well-developed lateral root system that has a propensity to form root suckers [2]. This attribute may be useful on sites subject to severe erosion.  Casuarina glauca produces wood suitable for fuelwood, poles and posts, sawn building timbers and charcoal [2]. Environmental benefits include shelter and and windbreaks in coastal locations.

Key descriptors:
Climate parameters
Mean annual rainfall: 600-1800 mm
Rainfall distribution pattern: summer or uniform
Mean annual temperature: 13-22 °C
Mean max. temperature of the hottest month: 24-31 °C
Mean min. temperature of the coldest month: 2-12 °C
Frosts (approx. no. per year): frost free or more or less frost free or up to 20
Frost intensity: light to moderate (0 to -5°C)
Altitude: 0-90 metres
Tolerance of climate extremes
Drought: known to be moderately drought tolerant
Fire: regenerates foliage after damaging fire
Frost: tolerates frosts in the 0° to -5°C range
Wind: known or has attributes to make an excellent windbreak, tolerates salt-laden coastal winds
Soil factors
Texture: clay loam, heavy clay (greater than 50% clay), light to medium clay (35-50% clay) or loam, sandy loam, sandy clay loam
Soil pH reaction: acidic (less than 6.5)
Soil depth: moderate to deep (30-100 cm or greater)
Drainage:  well-drained, poorly to imperfectly drained or seasonally waterlogged
Salinity: highly saline or slightly to moderately saline
Tolerance of adverse soils
Extremes in pH: acidity
Extremes in texture: clayey
Salinity: high (9-16 dS m-1), moderate (-8 dS m-1) or slight (2-4 dS m-1)
Soil waterlogging tolerance: up to or greater than 2 months or drainage may be sluggish at times
Biological traits under cultivation
Habit: evergreen tree 10-20 m tall or tree 5-10 m tall
Longevity: moderate to long lived (>15 years)
Growth rate: fast
Coppicing ability: responds to pruning, pollarding
Root system: shallow and spreading, fixes nitrogen via root symbiot or forms root suckers
Erosion control potential: excellent for clayey sites or excellent for sandy sites
Windbreak potential: excellent (known or has good attributes) or tolerates salty coastal winds
Shade tolerance: grows best in full sunlight
Wood density: mod. to high (greater than 600 kg/cubic metre)
Carbon sequestration potential: moderate to high
Potential farm use: excellent windbreak, good for fence posts or shelterbelt or shade for stock
Urban use: ideal maintenance free street tree or suitable as a screen or hedge
Wood products: craftwood (for turnery etc.), flooring (including parquetry), high quality fuelwood, industrial charcoal, light construction, poles (building, transmission, piling), posts (including fencing) or speciality timber for quality furniture, wood composites
Potentially undesirable attributes
Growth habit: mod. to strong propensity to root sucker or shallow roots may outcompete adjacent plants
Foliage: highly susceptible to browsing by animals (stock, rabbits, roos)
Weediness: high potential based on its biology


[1] Boland DJ, Brooker MIH, Chippendale GM, Hall N, Hyland BPM, Johnson RD, Kleinig DA, McDonald MW, Turner JD (2006) Forest Trees of Australia. CSIRO Publishing, Collingwood.

[2] Doran JC, Turnbull JW (eds.) (1997) Australian Trees and Shrubs: species for land rehabilitation and farm planting in the tropics. Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research, Canberra [ACIAR books online:]

[3] Clemson A (1985) Honey and Pollen Flora. Inkata Press, Melbourne.

[4] Gunn BV (2001) Australian Tree Seed Centre Operations Manual. Internal Publication, CSIRO Australian Tree Seed Centre, ACT. [Online at  Accessed March 2008]

[5] Marcar NE, Crawford DF (2004) Trees for Saline Landscapes. RIRDC Publication Number 03/108, Canberra.

Internet links

ABRS Species Bank:

Australian National Botanic Gardens:

PlantNET National Herbarium of New South Wales:

Victorian Department of Primary Industry: Note: search site - several documents relate to this species.