"Allocasuarina" or Casuarina?

She-Oak, Australian Pine
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"Allocasuarina" or Casuarina?

Post by Luke308 »

I have some seeds I bought, which have sprouted but I am confused by the different botanical names on this forum. Mine a labeled as "Casuarina Torulosa" yet I often see it referred to as "ALLOcasuarina torulosa" Are they the same tree? what does the "Allo" mean? I also have casuarina equisetifolia, is that labelled wrong too? All these botanical names can be a little confusing. Please help :fc:
Last edited by Luke308 on December 2nd, 2011, 5:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: "Allocasuarina" or Casuarina?

Post by Magzy »

Casuarinaceae are represented in three genera, Allocasuarina is the largest genus and are endemic to Australia which comprise of 59 species which range in size from bushes to forest trees up to 30 m tall. The genus Casuarina consist of 17 species that occur in South East Asia, Malaysia, Polynsia and Australia with only six species in Australia. Gymnostoma consist of 18 tropical species occuring from Malaysia to Nth Eastern Australia with only one occuring in Australia. Forest Oak or Rose Sheoak is Allocasuarina torulosa. Coast Sheoak also know as Beach and Horsetail Sheoak is Casuarina equisetifolia. River Oak or River Sheoak is Casuarina cunninghamiana. Most people who see a Sheoak will say it is a Casuarina because it is a name most people are familiar with. Hope this helps in some way. There is also a fourth genus Ceuthostoma which has 2 species found in Myanmar and Palawan in the Philippines just to confuse a bit more.
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Re: "Allocasuarina" or Casuarina?

Post by Luke308 »

Forest Oak or Rose Sheoak is Allocasuarina torulosa. Coast Sheoak also know as Beach and Horsetail Sheoak is Casuarina equisetifolia.
So I have two types :lost: I guess I'm not incorrect if I refer to them both as Sheoak. I certainly think the Horsetail sheoak (Casuarina equisetifolia) is by far the best looking and best suited sheoak for bonsai purposes :2c: , but the Allocasuarina torulosa seems to be most popular in Australia.

The Indonesian sure seem to have great success with Casuarina equisetifolia as bonsai, here are some examples just from a quick Google image search. (please not they aren't all Casuarina equisetifolia, but mostly are)
http://www.google.com.au/search?q=Casua ... 00&bih=710
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Re: "Allocasuarina" or Casuarina?

Post by Hornet »

Magzy wrote:Casuarinaceae are represented in three genera, Allocasuarina is the largest genus and are endemic to Australia which comprise of 59 species which range in size from bushes to forest trees up to 30 m tall. The genus Casuarina consist of 17 species that occur in South East Asia, Malaysia, Polynsia and Australia with only six species in Australia. Gymnostoma consist of 18 tropical species occuring from Malaysia to Nth Eastern Australia with only one occuring in Australia. Forest Oak or Rose Sheoak is Allocasuarina torulosa. Coast Sheoak also know as Beach and Horsetail Sheoak is Casuarina equisetifolia. River Oak or River Sheoak is Casuarina cunninghamiana. Most people who see a Sheoak will say it is a Casuarina because it is a name most people are familiar with. Hope this helps in some way. There is also a fourth genus Ceuthostoma which has 2 species found in Myanmar and Palawan in the Philippines just to confuse a bit more.
Do you know what actually separates the 2 main genera? Assuming its something to do with the flowers. I really love Casuarinaceae, i have members from 3 genera so far, Ceuthostoma being the elusive genus i cant find any info about or sources of
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Re: "Allocasuarina" or Casuarina?

Post by Hornet »

Luke308 wrote:
Forest Oak or Rose Sheoak is Allocasuarina torulosa. Coast Sheoak also know as Beach and Horsetail Sheoak is Casuarina equisetifolia.
So I have two types :lost: I guess I'm not incorrect if I refer to them both as Sheoak. I certainly think the Horsetail sheoak (Casuarina equisetifolia) is by far the best looking and best suited sheoak for bonsai purposes :2c: , but the Allocasuarina torulosa seems to be most popular in Australia.

The Indonesian sure seem to have great success with Casuarina equisetifolia as bonsai, here are some examples just from a quick Google image search. (please not they aren't all Casuarina equisetifolia, but mostly are)
http://www.google.com.au/search?q=Casua ... 00&bih=710
Yes you have 2 genera, both of which are commonly called she-oak. The horsetail she-oak is nice but IMO there are many better species with much finer foliage. torulosa is one of those finer foliaged species
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Re: "Allocasuarina" or Casuarina?

Post by kcpoole »

I have both Casuarina cunninghamiana and torulosa.
the torulosa is local to Sydney i think and has much finer foliage than cunninghamiana

I got the Seeds for cunninghamiana from Steven, and the torulosa from a local park here

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Re: "Allocasuarina" or Casuarina?

Post by Hornet »

cunninghamiana is probably an even better foliage, very fine foliage (as you said not as fine as torulosa) but it has tiny cones, alot smaller than torulosa. Not sure if they flower as bonsai but if they do the cones on cunninghamiana are tiny and would work well on bonsai
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Re: "Allocasuarina" or Casuarina?

Post by Joel »

Casuarina was the name of the first genus in Casuarinaceae (the family). Allocasuarina came from placing the prefix "Allo" (meaning "other") in front of Casuarina after finding species that looked similar to Casuarina but were botanically significantly different enough to put them into their own genus.

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Re: "Allocasuarina" or Casuarina?

Post by craigw60 »

Nobody seems to have mentioned litoralis the black she oak which makes very fine bonsai, Its bark cracks like torulosa but is much harder so makes working on them much easier. I have found the bark on cunninghamiana is very slow to crack and the trees take much longer to thicken than the above species.
I am growing equsetifolia here in the dandenong ranges and they are doing very well.
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Re: "Allocasuarina" or Casuarina?

Post by Joel »

I would also like to know if anybody is growing A. inophloia and has any seed to spare.

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Re: "Allocasuarina" or Casuarina?

Post by shibui »

Joel,
I have one A. inoploia here, very small still but my neighbour has one that is several years old and about 1.5m tall.
I obtained seed from the tree outside the main buildings (at the carpark) Botanic gardens, Canberra (but don't tell anyone). I only got one seedling from 5 or 6 cones.
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Re: "Allocasuarina" or Casuarina?

Post by Joel »

shibui wrote:Joel,
I have one A. inoploia here, very small still but my neighbour has one that is several years old and about 1.5m tall.
I obtained seed from the tree outside the main buildings (at the carpark) Botanic gardens, Canberra (but don't tell anyone). I only got one seedling from 5 or 6 cones.
Nice! I would like to get some seed from you in 15 years or so :P Has your neighbour's one started producing stringy park yet?

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Re: "Allocasuarina" or Casuarina?

Post by Magzy »

Had a chat with a bloke today who has taught me almost everything i know on trees and timber and this is what we have come up with. When the Casuarinaceae family was last revised it resulted in a family of 4 genera, the change included separation of Casuarina into two: Allocasuarina and Casuarina. Most of the general characteristics of Allocasuarina are the same as Casuarina. the botanical differences are very minor and one of the most readily distinguishable of these is in the samara (fruit) which holds the seed. It is brown or black in Allocasuarina, and grey or silver in Casuarina. I have access to a few swamp oak that i have started to cut down and wire new leaders but because of the lack of tap roots in them i am hoping i will be able to keep them alive when i dig them out.I wonder if any nurseries are starting to plant them as stock trees now because maybe soon the demand for them may increase when we start to see more and more of them. Cheers.
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Re: "Allocasuarina" or Casuarina?

Post by shibui »

Nice! I would like to get some seed from you in 15 years or so Has your neighbour's one started producing stringy park yet?
If and when seed is produced you would be welcome to some Joel but it would probably be quicker to see if someone in Canberra can obtain some from the trees at the gardens.

My neighbours tree has lots of flaky bark so it looks like that happens at a very early age.
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