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Useful Tropical Plants

Callitris columellaris

F.Muell.

Cupressaceae

+ Synonyms

Callitris intratropica R.T.Baker & H.G.Sm.

Callitris arenosa A.Cunn. ex R.T.Baker & H.G.Sm.

Callitris glauca R.Br. ex R.T.Baker & H.G.Sm.

Callitris glaucophylla J.Thomps. & L.A.S.Johnson

Callitris hugelii (Carrière) Franco

Callitris intermedia R.T.Baker & H.G.Sm.

Callitris robusta intratropica (R.T.Baker & H.G.Sm.) Ewart & O.B.Davies

Callitris robusta microcarpa (Benth.) F.M.Bailey

Frenela columellaris (F.Muell.) Parl.

Frenela hugelii Carrière

Frenela moorei Parl.

Frenela robusta microcarpa Benth.

Frenela verrucosa laevis C.Moore

Octoclinis backhousei W.Hill

Widdringtonia equisetiformis Mast.

Common Name: Northern Cypress Pine

Callitris columellaris
Growing as street trees in Brunei
Photograph by: Tony Rodd
Creative Commons License
Callitris columellaris Callitris columellaris

General Information

Callitris columellaris is a slow growing evergreen tree with a spreading to upright crown; it can grow up to 30 metres tall but is usually smaller. The bole can be 30 - 60cm in diameter[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
,
316
Title
Tropical Timbers of the World. Ag. Handbook No. 607.
Publication
 
Author
Chudnoff. Martin.
Publisher
USDA Forest Service. Wisconsin.
Year
1984
ISBN
 
Description
Terse details on the properties of the wood of almost 400 species of trees from the Tropics.
,
713
Title
Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/cpbr/cd-keys/rfk/index.html
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An online resource giving botanical information, and a little bit about plant usage, for over 2,700 species of plants found in the Australian rainforest.
].
The plant was used by the Australian aborigines as a medicine and to provide various other commodities. Experiments have been made with cultivating the plant for its valuable timber, but it has proved to be too slow growing for this. However, these plantations have served as a valuable resource for obtaining an essential oil and other natural products[
329
Title
The Gymnosperm Database
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.conifers.org/index.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An extremely valuable website, providing a vast amount of information on conifers and families of gymnosperms.
]. The plant is grown as an ornamental.
Callitris columellaris is here treated in a wide sense to include Callitris glaucophylla and Callitris intratropica. Although this species has been exploited throughout most of its range and its habitat is fragmented and degraded by a combination of grazing by domestic livestock and feral animals, altered fire regimes and invasion by exotic weeds, it is still very widespread and locally common. The plant is classified as 'Least Concern' in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species(2013)[
338
Title
IUCN Red List of Threatened Species
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.iucnredlist.org/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
A list of plants under threat and facing possible extinction, usually with brief details of the threats and information on habitat.
].

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References

1
Title
RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956
Publication
 
Author
F. Chittendon.
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Year
1951
ISBN
-
Description
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaced in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).
,
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
,
286
Title
Flora of Australia
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/abrs/abif/flora/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
The full information from the Flora of Australia - on-line. An excellent resource.

Range

Australia - South Australia, Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland, Northern Territories, Western Australia.

Habitat

Light soils, occasionally near the coast, but usually in dry inland areas up to the montane zone[
152
Title
Australian Medicinal Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Lassak. E. V. and McCarthy. T.
Publisher
 
Year
 
ISBN
 
Description
A very good and readable guide to the subject.
]. Locally abundant on deep coastal sands[
286
Title
Flora of Australia
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/abrs/abif/flora/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
The full information from the Flora of Australia - on-line. An excellent resource.
].

Properties

Conservation StatusLeast Concern
Medicinal Rating *  *
Other Uses Rating *  *  *
HabitEvergreen Tree
Height20.00 m
Growth RateSlow
PollinatorsWind
Cultivation StatusCultivated, Wild

Cultivation Details

Callitris columellaris is widespread in warm temperate to tropical regions of Australia, often growing in areas with low rainfall, ranging from 150 - 750mm per year. It is not very frost hardy, with some forms able to tolerate occasional short-lived temperatures down to around -7°c, and can only be grown outdoors in areas with mild winters, generally growing well in Mediterranean climates such as southern Europe, northern Africa and California[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
,
707
Title
Florabank Fact Sheets
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.florabank.org.au/lucid/key/Species%20Navigator/Media/Html/index.htm#D
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line publication. At present their are 132 species in the list, giving lots of information on growing and using the plants, plus information on their climatic tolerances, distribution maps and photographs.
].
Requires a sunny position, growing well in sandy, well-drained soils[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
]. Grows well near the coast[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
]. Tolerant of saline soils and, when established, of drought[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
]. Prefers a pH in the range 5.5 - 6.5, tolerating 5 - 7.5[
418
Title
Ecocrop
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ecocrop.fao.org/ecocrop/srv/en/home
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
Basic information on a wide range of useful plants, plus details of environmental needs where available.
].
Plants are highly flammable and so should not be planted near buildings in areas prone to bush fires[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].
Plants are adapted to growing in regions subject to periodic bush fires - the seed is usually only released after a fire, germinating rapidly to re-occupy the site[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].
A relatively slow-growing tree.

Edible Uses

None known

Medicinal

A decoction of the inner bark is used as a wash to relieve stomach cramps and to treat sores and cuts[
329
Title
The Gymnosperm Database
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.conifers.org/index.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An extremely valuable website, providing a vast amount of information on conifers and families of gymnosperms.
]. The decoction is also occasionally taken internally to relieve stomach cramps[
329
Title
The Gymnosperm Database
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.conifers.org/index.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An extremely valuable website, providing a vast amount of information on conifers and families of gymnosperms.
].

The wood ashes are mixed with water and smeared over the affected part of the body to relieve minor aches and pains[
329
Title
The Gymnosperm Database
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.conifers.org/index.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An extremely valuable website, providing a vast amount of information on conifers and families of gymnosperms.
].

Agroforestry Uses:

The plant is wind resistant and makes an excellent shelterbelt[
707
Title
Florabank Fact Sheets
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.florabank.org.au/lucid/key/Species%20Navigator/Media/Html/index.htm#D
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line publication. At present their are 132 species in the list, giving lots of information on growing and using the plants, plus information on their climatic tolerances, distribution maps and photographs.
].

Other Uses

A resin obtained from the stumps of felled trees or the cut logs is used as a coating for pills[
152
Title
Australian Medicinal Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Lassak. E. V. and McCarthy. T.
Publisher
 
Year
 
ISBN
 
Description
A very good and readable guide to the subject.
].

A high quality essential oil is extracted from the heartwood[
329
Title
The Gymnosperm Database
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.conifers.org/index.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An extremely valuable website, providing a vast amount of information on conifers and families of gymnosperms.
,
713
Title
Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/cpbr/cd-keys/rfk/index.html
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An online resource giving botanical information, and a little bit about plant usage, for over 2,700 species of plants found in the Australian rainforest.
]. Called 'Australian blue cypress' oil in the trade, it is used in perfumery, cosmetics and aromatherapy[
329
Title
The Gymnosperm Database
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.conifers.org/index.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An extremely valuable website, providing a vast amount of information on conifers and families of gymnosperms.
].

The bark is burnt in camp fires to repel insects[
329
Title
The Gymnosperm Database
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.conifers.org/index.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An extremely valuable website, providing a vast amount of information on conifers and families of gymnosperms.
].

The bark contains 11 - 23% dry weight of tannin[
1
Title
RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956
Publication
 
Author
F. Chittendon.
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Year
1951
ISBN
-
Description
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaced in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).
,
156
Title
Useful Wild Plants in Australia.
Publication
 
Author
Cribb. A. B. and J. W.
Publisher
William Collins Pty Ltd. Sidney
Year
1981
ISBN
0-00-216441-8
Description
A very readable book.
].

The heartwood is light brown in colour with dark brown longitudinal streaks; the sapwood varies from pale straw to pinkish tan. The grain is usually straight; texture rather fine; lustrous; the odour is aromatic camphor-like; greasy feel. The resinous wood is very durable, insect-resistant, brittle, very flammable, hard, close grained. It seasons readily but because of low shrinkage is customarily used in the green or partially dried condition; tends to check around knots. It is fairly easy to work although there is some tearing of grain around knots; dresses well to a smooth finish and takes a high polish; some tendency to split when nailed. It is used for construction, furniture making, cabinet making, fencing, ship building etc[
1
Title
RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956
Publication
 
Author
F. Chittendon.
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Year
1951
ISBN
-
Description
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaced in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).
,
152
Title
Australian Medicinal Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Lassak. E. V. and McCarthy. T.
Publisher
 
Year
 
ISBN
 
Description
A very good and readable guide to the subject.
,
167
Title
A Field Guide to Australian Trees.
Publication
 
Author
Holliday. I. and Hill. R.
Publisher
Frederick Muller Ltd.
Year
1974
ISBN
0-85179-627-3
Description
A well illustrated and very readable book, but it does not contain much information for the plant project.
,
286
Title
Flora of Australia
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.anbg.gov.au/abrs/abif/flora/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
The full information from the Flora of Australia - on-line. An excellent resource.
,
316
Title
Tropical Timbers of the World. Ag. Handbook No. 607.
Publication
 
Author
Chudnoff. Martin.
Publisher
USDA Forest Service. Wisconsin.
Year
1984
ISBN
 
Description
Terse details on the properties of the wood of almost 400 species of trees from the Tropics.
].
The wood makes a good fuel, burning well even when wet and releasing a pleasant smell that keeps insects away[
329
Title
The Gymnosperm Database
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.conifers.org/index.htm
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An extremely valuable website, providing a vast amount of information on conifers and families of gymnosperms.
]. It can also be used to make charcoal[
707
Title
Florabank Fact Sheets
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://www.florabank.org.au/lucid/key/Species%20Navigator/Media/Html/index.htm#D
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent on-line publication. At present their are 132 species in the list, giving lots of information on growing and using the plants, plus information on their climatic tolerances, distribution maps and photographs.
].

Propagation

Seed - does not require stratification, germinating at any time of the year if it becomes moist[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
]. Sow in a nursery seedbed. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on until large enough to plant out.

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