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Casuarina cunninghamiana is a she-oak species of the genus Casuarina. The native range in Australia extends from Daly River in the Northern Territory, north and east in Queensland and eastern New South Wales.[1][2]

Casuarina cunninghamiana
Casuarina cunninghamiana tree.jpg
Casuarina cunninghamiana tree in flower..
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Fagales
Family: Casuarinaceae
Genus: Casuarina
C. cunninghamiana
Binomial name
Casuarina cunninghamiana
Immature seedpods in situ



Male flowers of a C. cunninghamiana subsp. cunninghamiana.

The River Oak is an attractive evergreen tree with fine greyish green needle-like foliage that grows to a height of 10–35 m (33–115 ft) with a spread of about 10 metres (33 ft).[1][3] The trunk is usually erect, with dense rough bark. Flowers are reddish-brown in the male and red in the female.[1] Cones are small, nearly round to elongated and about 10 millimetres (0.39 in) across.[1]

Trees are usually found in sunny locations along stream banks and swampy areas.[1] It's widely recognised as an important tree for stabilising riverbanks and for soil erosion prevention accepting wet and dry soils. The foliage is quite palatable to stock.[2] C. cunninghamiana is frost tolerant down to around −8 °C (18 °F) and is widely used effectively as a screening plant. It is useful on windy sites and is also suited to coastal areas. C. cunninghamiana has been introduced into several other countries for the purpose of agroforestry.[3]

There are two subspecies:

  • C. cunninghamiana subsp. cunninghamiana. Large tree to 35 m (115 ft) tall. Eastern New South Wales, north and east Queensland.[1][3]
  • C. cunninghamiana subsp. miodon. Small tree to 12 m (39 ft) tall. Daly River and Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory and the Gulf of Carpentaria in Queensland.[1][3]

The species has many common names including River Oak, River She-oak or Creek Oak.[2]

Invasive speciesEdit

Casuarina cunninghamiana is an invasive species in the Everglades in Florida[4] and in South Africa.[5]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Boxshall, Ben; Jenkyn, Tim. "River she-oak" (PDF). Department of Primary Industries. Victorian Government. Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 September 2009. Retrieved 23 April 2011.
  2. ^ a b c Boland, D. J.; Brooker, M. I. H.; Chippendale, G. M.; McDonald, M. W. (2006). Forest trees of Australia (5th ed.). Collingwood, Vic.: CSIRO Publishing. p. 80. ISBN 0-643-06969-0.
  3. ^ a b c d "Casuarina cunninghamiana". Florabank. Retrieved 23 April 2011.
  4. ^ "Biological control of Australian native Casuarina species in the USA". Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation. 16 May 2007. Archived from the original on 5 June 2011. Retrieved 16 September 2010.
  5. ^ "SANBI:Declared Weeds & Invader Plants". South African National Biodiversity Institute. Archived from the original on 6 October 2014. Retrieved 25 September 2014.

External linksEdit