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Bull Creek, Qld

Mitchell River, Qld

buds

seedling

Natural populations

Eucalyptus camaldulensissubsp. simulata is a riverine tree that occurs along rivers in the Cape York Peninsula region of north Queensland with a southern outlier west of Townsville [1,2,3]. Tallest trees are up to 30 m in height and grow on riverine sandy loams and clays. Recent morphological and genetic studies of E. camaldulensis have delineated a number of subspecies that show a broad geographic replacement pattern throughout its range [1,2].

Flowering and seeds

This subspecies flowers during July to November but timing varies considerably among populations [1]. Seed capsules persist on trees until at least the following summer but may shed seed earlier in some areas. There are about 600 viable seeds per gram; seeds start to germinate in about 5 days if grown at 25-30°C with no pretreatment required [6].

Cultivation and uses

Eucalyptus camaldulensis subsp. simulata has been cultivated in a number of tropical countries, particularly in South East Asia. Despite being a strictly riparian tree in natural populations, under cultivation it grows well on a wide range of recharge sites. It is a fast growing, readily established and has potential for firewood, timber and pulpwood production. Demand for seed from this subspecies has increased markedly as a result of its performance in trials involving range-wide provenances of E. camaldulensis (based on despatch records of CSIRO Australian Tree Seed Centre).

Key descriptors:
Climate parameters
Mean annual rainfall: 900-1000 mm
Rainfall distribution pattern: summer
Mean annual temperature: 22-28 °C
Mean max. temperature of the hottest month: 31-32 °C
Mean min. temperature of the coldest month: 15-18 °C
Frosts (approx. no. per year):  frost free or more or less frost free
Altitude: 20-420 metres
Tolerance of extremes in climate
Drought: known to be moderately drought tolerant
Fire: regenerates foliage after damaging fire
Soil factors
Texture: clay loam, heavy clay (greater than 50% clay), light to medium clay (35-50% clay), loam, sandy loam, sandy clay loam or sand
Soil pH reaction: acidic (less than 6.5) or neutral (6.5-7.5)
Soil depth: moderate to deep (30-100 cm or greater)
Drainage:  well-drained or seasonally waterlogged
Salinity: slightly to moderately saline or non-saline
Tolerance of adverse soils
Extremes in pH: acidity
Extremes in texture: clayey or sand
Salinity: nil - sensitive to saline soils or slight (2-4 dS m-1)
Soil waterlogging tolerance: drainage may be sluggish at times
Biological traits under cultivation
Habit: evergreen tree > 20 m tall, usually produces a clear trunk
Longevity: moderate to long lived (>15 years)
Growth rate: fast
Coppicing ability: vigorous, responds to pruning, pollarding; lignotuberous
Root system: moderate to deep
Erosion control potential: excellent for clayey sites or sandy sites
Shade tolerance: grows best in full sunlight
Wood density: mod. to high (greater than 600 kg/cubic metre)
Carbon sequestration potential: high
Uses
Specialty products: flowers produce nectar for honey production, pollen has value for apiculture
Urban use: good as an ornamental or amenity plant
Wood products: heavy construction, high quality fuelwood, industrial charcoal, poles (building, transmission, piling), speciality timber for quality furniture

References

[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] Slee AV, Connors J, Brooker MIH, Duffy SM, West JG (2006) EUCLID Eucalypts of Australia. Third Edition CD ROM Centre for Plant Biodiversity Research. CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne.

[3] Brooker MIH and Kleinig DA (1994) Field Guide to Eucalypts, Volume 3. Bloomings Books, Melbourne.

[4] Butcher PA, McDonald MW and Bell JC (in press) Congruence between environmental parameters, morphology and genetic structure in Australia’s most widely distributed eucalypt, Eucalyptus camaldulensis. Tree Genetics and Genomes.

[5] McDonald MW, Brooker MIH (in prep.) A taxonomic revision of Eucalyptus camaldulensis Dehnh.

[6] Gunn BV (2001) Australian Tree Seed Centre Operations Manual. Internal Publication, CSIRO Australian Tree Seed Centre, ACT. [Online at http://www.ensisjv.com/Portals/0/atsc-opmanualcomplete.pdf  Accessed March 2008]

Internet links

Heredity: www.nature.com/hdy/journal/v88/n5/full/6800074a.html

Centre for Plant Biodiversity Research (Euclid sample): http://www.cpbr.gov.au/cpbr/cd-keys/euclid3/euclidsample/html/Eucalyptus_camaldulensis_subsp._simulata.htm

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