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Casuarina littoralis - (Salisb.) L.A.S.Johnson

Common Name Black She Oak, Bull Oak, Wayetuck
Family Casuarinaceae
USDA hardiness 9-11
Known Hazards Allocasuarina littoralis, commonly known as black sheoak, black she-oak, or river black-oak, is an endemic medium-sized Australian tree (usually up to 8 metres, but sometimes to 15 metres - coarse shrub in exposed maritime areas).[1][2] A. littoralis is named for its growth near the coast; this is somewhat misleading, as it will grow well both inland and in coastal zones
Habitats Sandy coastal heaths[ 200 ], especially on poor sandstone soils[ 167 ]. Widespread on heath and in open forests[ 265 ]. Found at elevations from sea level to 1,200 metres[ 707 ].
Range Australia - Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania.
Edibility Rating    (1 of 5)
Other Uses    (4 of 5)
Weed Potential Yes
Medicinal Rating    (0 of 5)
Care (info)
Tender Moist Soil Full sun
Casuarina littoralis Black She Oak, Bull Oak, Wayetuck

Casuarina littoralis Black She Oak, Bull Oak, Wayetuck


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Black She Oak (Bull Oak or River Black Oak). Allocasuarina littoralis. A fast-growing evergreen tree in the Casuarinaceae family, Black She Oak has relatively low modified branchlets appearing to be leaves and a dense crown. It grows up to 15m in height when fully matured. Its flowers are red in colour and appear during spring. The tree is endemic in Australia, with wide climatic tolerance as it can thrive in both temperate and moist, lowland tropics. It has nitrogen-fixing ability through its symbiotic relationship with certain soil micro-organisms. It can also be used in preventing soil erosion on sandy soils due to its shallow, spreading root system. The bark is used for tanning. The wood is hard, durable, and heavy thus it is commonly used for furniture making and other purposes. Also, the wood is a great source of high-quality fuel and is used to make a high-grade charcoal. Propagation methods are seed sowing and cuttings.

Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of cone
Casuarina littoralis is an evergreen Tree growing to 8 m (26ft) by 8 m (26ft) at a fast rate.
See above for USDA hardiness. It is hardy to UK zone 10 and is not frost tender. The species is dioecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant so both male and female plants must be grown if seed is required). . The plant is not self-fertile.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. Suitable pH: mildly acid and neutral soils and can grow in very acid and saline soils.
It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers moist soil and can tolerate drought. The plant can tolerate maritime exposure.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map


Casuarina littoralis Salisb. Casuarina suberosa Otto.&Dietr.

Plant Habitats

Woodland Garden Canopy; Secondary; South Wall. By. West Wall. By.

Edible Uses

Edible portion: Cones, Gum. Use: The gum exudate is chewed and also the jelly made by melting the gum in hot water.

References   More on Edible Uses

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.

None known

References   More on Medicinal Uses

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Other Uses


Other uses rating: High (4/5). Agroforestry Uses: Tolerant of salt-laden, coastal winds, the plant makes an excellent windbreak in exposed situations. It can also be grown to form a hedge or screen[ 707 ]. The plant has a shallow, spreading root system and has excellent potential for erosion control on sandy soils[ 707 ]. Other Uses The bark is used for tanning[ 46 ]. The wood is hard, heavy and durable. It is used for turnery, tool handles, yokes, furniture, farm buildings, roof shingles, veneer and joinery[ 167 , 707 ]. The wood makes an excellent, high-quality fuel and is also used to make a high-grade charcoal[ 167 , 707 ].

Special Uses

Food Forest  Nitrogen Fixer

References   More on Other Uses

Cultivation details

The plant has a very wide climatic tolerance, being found from the south of Tasmania to the tip of northern Queensland, from the temperate zone right through to the moist, lowland tropics. It succeeds in areas where the mean annual temperature is in the range 6 - 27c, with the mean for the hottest month 19 - 30c and the coolest month -1 - 16c. It can tolerate temperatures down to about -5c. It prefers a mean annual rainfall in the range 650 - 1,250mm[ 707 ]. Requires a well-drained moisture-retentive soil in full sun[ 200 ]. Tolerant of a wide range of soils from moderately heavy to sandy, it is often found growing in poor, dry, shallow soils in the wild[ 167 , 200 , 707 ]. Succeeds in very acid soils, but does not grow well in alkaline soils[ 707 ]. Plants are very tolerant of maritime exposure, though they often occur as coarse shrubs when growing in such situations[ 286 , 707 ]. Established plants are drought tolerant[ 707 ]. The plant has a high potential to become a weed if grown outside of its native range[ 707 ]. A fast growing tree[ 707 ]. Plants do not coppice well, nor do they regenerate after fire[ 707 ]. The bark is rarely corky, in spite of its synonym (suberosa means corky)[ 1 ]. Plants in this species are usually dioecious, both male and female plants will usually need to be grown if seed is required[ 286 ]. This species has a symbiotic relationship with certain soil micro-organisms, these form nodules on the roots of the plants and fix atmospheric nitrogen. Some of this nitrogen is utilized by the growing plant but some can also be used by other plants growing nearby[ 157 , 200 ].

References   Carbon Farming Information and Carbon Sequestration Information

Temperature Converter

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Plant Propagation

Seed - does not require pre-treatment.[ 707 ] Sow the seed in containers or a nursery seedbed and only just cover the seed[ 138 ]. Germination starts in about 7 days at 25?c[ 707 ]. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on until large enough to plant out. Cuttings of half-ripe wood in a frame[ 157 , 200 ].

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Black She Oak, Bull Oak, Wayetuck

Native Range

AUSTRALASIA: Australia (Tasmania, New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria)

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

May be weedy

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status : This taxon has not yet been assessed.

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther
Allocasuarina littoralisBlack She Oak, Bull Oak, WayetuckTree8.0 9-11 FLMHNM104
Casuarina cristataBelahTree12.0 8-11 FLMHNDM003
Casuarina cunninghamianaRiver She-OakTree18.0 8-11  LMHNDM005
Casuarina equisetifoliaShe Oak, Common Ru, Australian Pine, Horsetail CasuarinaTree30.0 9-12 FLMHSNDM125
Casuarina glaucaSwamp Oak, Gray sheoakTree18.0 8-11  LMNDM103
Casuarina oligodonShe-oak, kiluTree25.0 10-12 MLMHNM004
Casuarina torulosaForest OakTree15.0 8-11  LMHNDM003
Casuarina verticillataDrooping she-oakTree10.0 8-11  LMHNDM003

Growth: S = slow M = medium F = fast. Soil: L = light (sandy) M = medium H = heavy (clay). pH: A = acid N = neutral B = basic (alkaline). Shade: F = full shade S = semi-shade N = no shade. Moisture: D = dry M = Moist We = wet Wa = water.


Expert comment


(Salisb.) L.A.S.Johnson

Botanical References


Links / References

For a list of references used on this page please go here
A special thanks to Ken Fern for some of the information used on this page.

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