Lophostemon depressus Schott
Melaleuca suaveolens Sol. ex Gaertn.
Tristania depressa Link
Tristania rhytiphloia F.Muell.
Tristania salicifolia Link ex Steud.
Tristania suaveolens (Sol. ex Gaertn.) Sm.
Common Name: Swamp Mahogany
Flowers and leaves
Photograph by: Tatters
Swamp mahogany is an evergreen shrub or tree that can reach up to 25 metres tall, but is usually smaller[
]. The bole can be 30 - 45cm in diameter[
The tree is harvested from the wild for its wood, which is mainly used locally.
Australia - New South Wales, Queensland; north to New Guinea.
Often found in lowland areas that are subject to periodic inundation, though it is also found on well-drained higher ground[
]. Sclerophyll forest, widespread and common in coastal districts, often on swampy ground or alluvial flats[
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A plant of the moist to wet subtropics and tropics where it is found at elevations up to 800 metres. It grows best in areas where annual daytime temperatures are within the range 22 - 33°c, though it can tolerate 12 - 38°c[
]. The dormant plant can be killed by temperatures of -5°c or lower, whilst young growth is damaged at -1°c[
]. It prefers a mean annual rainfall in the range 650 - 1,800mm, tolerating 500 - 2,100mm and is tolerant of a dry season[
Grows best in a sunny position[
]. Succeeds in most soils, tolerating periodic inundation[
]. Prefers a pH in the range 5 - 6, tolerating 4.5 - 6.5[
The dark red-brown to chocolate brown wood is close-grained, very strong, tough, elastic, durable[
]. The sapwood is rapidly destroyed by borers, but the wood has considerable resistance to marine borers[
]. It is used for general building purposes, cogs of wheels, tool handles, posts, buggy and coach frames etc[
]. The bark was traditionally used for making canoes[
The wood makes a poor fuel, burning badly and producing lots of soot[
Seed - very small, it is best mixed with fine sand when sowing. It germinates easily.
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