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The Queensland Gardening Pages
Information & resources about plants & gardens for Brisbane & Qld

Ornamental Trees

This page will cover issues related to trees in the urban landscape plus tree selection, planting and maintenance in general. Fruit trees covered in more detail on the Fruits and nuts page.

News

More shade for Brisbane pathways

Brisbane City Council has declared that its footpaths and cycleways will be cooler and greener in the future as a result of its Neighbourhood Shadeways initiative. The aim is to increase the city's street tree population by 35000 by 2026, taking shading along residential footpaths and cycle ways to 50% from a current 35%. A range of native shade tree species will be used. Council is encouraging residents to let them know where they would like more trees planted More information: Lord Mayor's growing plan to shade Brisbane streets (October 2012)

New woody weed control developed in Qld

A new biocontrol agent developed by the University of Queensland could mean a simple and safe way to control woody weeds. Developed from fungi which already occur in the Australian environment, the treatment is delivered as a capsule inserted into the trunk of the tree. In addition to killing the inoculated tree, the fungi could persist to kill seedlings that subsequently emerge in the area, or even untreated mature trees nearby. Commercialisation of the "bioherbicide" for control of Parkinsonia is underway, but it has the potential to control many types of other woody weeds. More information at the University of Queensland website: Australia's first bioherbicide approaching release (August 2012)

Older news items at bottom of page

Related Topics:

Advanced Trees (nurseries, transplant services)



Where to buy trees and tree services

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You're likely to find a selection of trees suitable for your area in your local garden centres.

Some nurseries specialise in particular categories of plants (e.g. fruit trees, frangipani, palms, etc). These are good places to look for less commonly cultivated varities. Follow the links on the Plants page to see if there is a specialist nursery listed in your category of interest.

If you specifically want to buy trees in large container sizes for instant landscapes, try the nurseries listed on the Advanced Plants page. Some specialists may also carry advanced stock.

If you need large quanities of tubestock for farm forestry or revegetation projects, you may need to identify a wholesale grower or similar. Try local agricultural and forestry research stations or environmental organisations for suitable contacts (some links here: Australian Natives Links)

Looking for someone to prune a tree or to assess or treat a tree problem? Go to Arborists and Tree-related Services

Species

Hundreds of tree species could potentially be grown in Queensland, but a great many would not be practical in urban environments and/or are not readily available on the commercial market.

The folllowing selected genera contain some of the more popular tree species for ornamental purposes in Qld. Follow the links for more information. Please note, however, that many species referred to on these pages will nevertheless be unsuitable for small gardens, so please do your research before planting.

See also Shrubs (some larger shrub species can be trained as small trees).


Genus
Link indicates a dedicated page
Notes, Other links
Includes assorted links to other websites if no dedicated page on this site
Acmenasee Lillipilly
Acrocarpus
Acrocarpus fraxinifolius Flowers of India
Acrocarpus fraxinifolius World Agroforestry Center
Aleurites
Aleurites moluccana Ecocrop database, FAO
Aleurites moluccanus Flowers of India
Avocadosee Fruit
Backhousia 
Bauhinia 
Bixa
Bixa orellana L. Center for Tropical Plant Conservation, Florida
Bixa orellana, Annatto The Florez Nursery blog, NSW
Bixa orellana Annatto, Lipstick Tree, Achiote. Online Manual of Subtropical Landscaping Plants, Palm Beach Community College, Florida
Bixa orellana Ecocrop database, FAO
Bolusanthus 
Bombax
Bombax ceiba Red Silk-Cotton Tree. Online Manual of Subtropical Landscaping Plants, Palm Beach Community College, Florida
Rare and beautiful trees for south Florida includes notes on Bombax ceiba. Reproduction of a 1915 article, Proceedings of the Florida State Horticultural Society (PDF)
Brachychiton 
Brownea
Brownea macrophylla Panama Flame Tree At "Grow Me Instead" (an Australian website informing gardeners about safer alternatives to invasive ornamentals)
Brownea macrophylla Harold L. Lyon Arboretum Plant Profiles, University of Hawaii at Manoa
Rose-of-Venezuela Online Manual of Subtropical Landscaping Plants, Palm Beach Community College, Florida
Buckinghamia 
Callistemon 
Calodendron 
Cananga 
Cassia 
Casuarina 
Ceiba
Ceiba speciosa (Floss Silk Tree) Garden Adventures blog, Florida
Cotton on a Tree Chorisia speciosa, or floss-silk tree Mildred E. Mathias Botanical Garden, California
Ceiba pentandra Kapok, Silk-Cotton Tree. Online Manual of Subtropical Landscaping Plants, Palm Beach Community College, Florida
Chorisia speciosaSee Ceiba
Citharexylum
Aconophora compressa (this insect attacks fiddlewood trees) Qld DPI
Citrus 
Colvillea
Colvillea racemosa Graeme Cocks' Plants of Townsville
Colvillea racemosa Flowers of India
From WAY Over There-Madagascar Trees - Colvillea Pinecrest Plant Guy blog, Miami
Combretum Combretum constrictum - the Powderpuff Combretum. "My Dry Tropics Garden" blog, Qld
Conifers 
Cupaniopsis
Dais 
Delonix 
Deplanchea
Deplanchea tetraphylla The Taxonomy Research & Information Network
Golden Banquet Tree Graeme Cocks' Plants of Townsville
Dillenia
Adding day time fragrance to your Miami-Dade landscape See notes on Dillenia indica Univ. Florida (PDF)
Dillenia alata The Taxonomy Research & Information Network
Dillenia alata (Red Beech) James Cook University, Qld
Dillenia indica (Elephant Apple) James Cook University, Qld
Dombeya
Pink Ball - Dombeya wallichii Urban Forest Ecosystems Institute, California
Pink Ball Dombeya (Dombeya wallichii) Flowers of India
Dombeya wallichii: Pinkball University of Florida
A Guide to Planting an African-American/African Focused Yard in Miami-Dade County (includes notes on Dombeya species) University of Florida (PDF)
PlantZAfrica.com Check the "Plants of SA" menu. Information on several Dombeya species is included. South African National Biodiversity Institute
Dombeya, Pinkball, Snowball Bush, Tropical Snowball Tree, Tropical Hydrangea Online Manual of Subtropical Landscaping Plants, Palm Beach Community College, Florida
Elaeocarpus 
Enterolobium
Right Plant / Right Place : A Universal Concept Article about Enterolobium cyclocarpum, the "Ear Tree". University of Florida
Erythrina 
Eucalyptus 
EugeniaSee Lilipilly
Frangipanisee Plumeria
Franklinia 
Fruit trees 
Gordonia 
Grevillea 
Guajacum
Guaiacum officinale Ecocrop database, FAO
Guaiacum officinale, Lignum-Vitae University of Florida
Guaiacum officinale AgroForestryTree Database
Lignum Vitae (Guajacum officinale, Guajacum sanctum) Online Manual of Subtropical Landscaping Plants, Palm Beach Community College, Florida
Gustavia
Gustavia superba - A tropical beauty Gardening with Wilson, Singapore
GymnostomaSee Casuarina
Harpullia
Harpullia pendula (Tulipwood) James Cook University, Qld
Hymenosporum 
Jacaranda 
Kigelia
Kigelia pinnata (Sausage tree) James Cook University, Qld
Kigelia africana - Sausage Tree Graeme Cocks' Plants of Townsville
Sausage Tree Kigelia africana. Online Manual of Subtropical Landscaping Plants, Palm Beach Community College, Florida
Kigelia pinnata AgroForestryTree Database
Sausage Tree Kigelia pinnata. Kruger National Park - South Africa Safari and Lodging Guide
Kigelia pinnata Ecocrop database, FAO
Gorgeous Bignons in Westwood some notes on this family and its many ornamental members, in particular Kigelia africana (K. pinnata). Mildred E. Mathias Botanical Garden, California
Lagerstroemia 
Lagunaria 
Leptospermum 
Lilypillies 
Liquidambar 
Lophanthera
Lophostemon 
Macaranga 
Magnolia 
MangoGo to Fruit menu
Maniltoa
Maniltoa lenticellata The Taxonomy Research & Information Network
Maniltoa lenticellata James Cook University, Qld
Markhamia
Markhamia lutea AgroForestryTree Database
Gold Markhamia (Markhamia lutea) Urban Forest Ecosystems Institute, California
Markhamia lutea Flowers of India
A Guide to Planting an African-American/African Focused Yard in Miami-Dade County (includes notes on Markhamia lutea) University of Florida (PDF)
Markhamia lutea Siala Tree. Online Manual of Subtropical Landscaping Plants, Palm Beach Community College, Florida
Markhamia lutea Ecocrop database, FAO
Melaleuca 
Michelia 
Mimusops elengi 
Palms 
Pandanus 
Peltophorum 
Pittosporum 
Plumeria 
PodocarpusGo to Conifers
PoincianaGo to Delonix
Polyalthia 
Polyscias 
Polyspora 
Radermachera
Rothmannia 
Saraca
Saraka indica - Asota Graeme Cocks' Plants of Townsville
Saraca indica National Tropical Botanical Garden, USA
Saraca asoca Flowers of India
Saraca indica, a Chiang Mai December flame Dokmai Dogma (Blog, Thailand)
Ashoka The Great Saraca asoca Gifting Trees, India
Schotia 
Stenocarpus 
Syzygium
Tabebuia 
Tibouchina 
Tipuana 
Triplaris 
Vitex 
WaterhousiaSee Lilipilly
Xanthostemon 


More Resources

Queensland
Vegetation fact sheets Dept Natural Resources & Mines, Queensland. Series covers many aspects of tree planting, care and management for homes and farms, including (PDFs):
Pools 'n' Plants The Swimming pool and Spa Association of Queensland Inc. (SPASA)
Mulching Under Trees Factsheet. Hervey Bay City Council (PDF)
safetree "Powerline friendly" planting tips from Energex
Street trees recommended by Brisbane City Council
Trees for the Evelyn and Atherton Tablelands Newsletter, Dry Season July - September 2006. Includes some interesting notes on performance of a number of tree species through Cyclone Larry
Historic trees Information on several important trees in Qld, such as the "Burke and Wills Dig Tree". Environmental Protection Agency, Queensland

Australia
Urban Tree Stories Research project about people and trees in Australian cities, in which you can participate
How Trees Affect Soils Rural Industries Research & Development Corporation, Australian Government
Root establishment strategies of rainforest seedlings (PDF) Cooperative Research Centre for Tropical Rainforest Ecology and Management
Tree Lists, ETSA Utilities South Australia (PDF)
Tree Roots A Growing Problem South East Water Limited, Vicoria (PDF)
Do you have a monster in your backyard? Hunter Water Corporation, NSW
Drain Cloggers Australian Plants Society, Central Coast Group (NSW)
How Trees Affect Soils Rural Industries Research & Development Corporation
Water Use by Trees Rural Industries Research & Development Corporation
eucalyptus A blog about trees in Australia
Urban Tree Stories Research project about people and trees in Australian cities in which you can participate. This website also has summaries of other research findings about urban trees

International
Links about drought stress and watering of trees moved to Garden Watering Issues

Links about pruning of established trees and dealing with storm damaged trees moved to Arborists

Links about the production and planting of extra-large nursery stock and transplanting large trees and shrubs: Advanced Plants

Some Tree Basics The Overstory, Agroforestry ejournal
Twelve Tree Myths The Overstory, Agroforestry ejournal
Stem Girdling Roots Arizona Cooperative Extension, Yavapai County
Tree Roots in Urban Landscapes Lots of information available for download. The Morton Arboretum, Illinois
When Tree Roots Surface Purdue University
Danny Boy the Pipes.... Some views about clogged drain pipes and their treatment. Arboretum Plant Information Log (California)
Do tree roots grow after the tree is cut? (also something about pipes) New Mexico State University
Planting a tree College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources free publication, University of Hawaii at Manoa, USA (PDF)
Staking and guying newly planted trees College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources free publication, University of Hawaii at Manoa, USA (PDF)
Staking Trees Cornell University
Does Size Matter? Article about the advantages of planting a tree from small sized stock. Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, Florida
Caring for Established Trees Ohio State University USA
Fertilizing Woody Ornamentals Extension Horticulture Information Resource Texas A&M University
Aging and Rejuvenation in Trees Arnold Arboretum, Harvard University (PDF)
Landscaping Around Established Trees NebGuide from University of Nebraska
Trees and Home Construction Ohio State University USA
10 Things You Should Know About Lichens Ohio State University USA
What About the Lichen on My Tree? New Mexico State University
Preventing Fruiting in Woody Plants NebGuide from University of Nebraska
Unasylva - No. 173 - Urban and peri-urban forestry Forestry Dept, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
A Tall Order - Large Stature Trees discusses the intergration on large trees in city landscapes
The Enduring Bonds Between People And Trees Discusses some customs and beliefs concerning trees from around the world
Tree Ring Research Arizona Cooperative Extension, Yavapai County

For more on placement of trees around the house for savings to cooling and heating bills, go to The Self-Sufficiency Pages - Building

Older News

More items related to arboricultural activities in various municipalities around Queensland, on the Arborists page.

Toowoomba tree plan takes trophy

The Toowoomba Street Tree Master Plan has won the Sustainable Initiatives Category in the national Parks and Leisure Australia Awards of Excellence A bloomin' great effort bags national awards (September 2012)

Tree replacement won't let poisoners win

It has been confirmed that a dead Casuarina glauca on the Golden Beach foreshore was poisoned. Unfortunately, it will have to be removed. Sunshine Coast Council will promptly replaced it by a new specimen of the same species, with a high level of protection and monitoring during its establishment. Anyone convicted of poisoning a tree could face very heavy fines. Source: Calling for community support in protection of tree (August 2012)

Urban trees' filtering effects examined
Research estimates that urban trees in the Greater London Authority area remove between 850 and 2000 tonnes of particulate pollution from the air every year. There are plans to increase tree planting in London and the rest of the country, and the methodology used in the study could with help with species selection and location of planting with respect to this form of pollution and its asssociated human health effects. Source: New study shows how trees clean the air in London (October 2011)

Leaf venation a limit to growth
A study of fossil leaves suggest that an increase in the number of veins per unit area of leaf may have increased the efficiency of water movement through plants and made the first rainforest giants possible. Source: First rainforests arose when plants solved plumbing problem (May 2011)

Reprieve for Theebine trees
A plan to remove seven large trees to build a carpark at the school in Theebine (near Gympie) is to be modified after protests from the town's residents. A more modest design will be implemented at the small school. Source: Theebine's School Trees Saved (April 2011)

Planting guide for cyclone regions
Associate Professor Betsy Jackes has written a guide based on almost 40 years of observations to help residents of north Queensland and Darwin select and cultivate trees with safety in mind. No tree is totally cyclone-proof, but factors such as the leaf type, branching structure, type of root system, conditions at planting and subsequent pruning can also affect their performance in a cyclone. You can find the guide at the Jame Cook University website here: Choosing Plants for Areas Prone to Cyclones. (March 2011)

High-rise nitrogen fixation
A new significance for old-growth trees in some ecosystems has been discovered in North American coastal temperate rainforests. It was already known that cyanobacteria in mosses on the forest floor fixed nitrogen, but it was found that they were more abundant in mosses growing high in the canopy. As mosses take a long time to accumulate, nitrogen input into the system can be affected by the density of very old trees. (February, 2011)

Laws on neighbours' trees to receive update
A draft copy of new laws designed to make disputes over trees and fences easier to resolve has been released for community consultation. It's hoped that the new laws will be better suited to the 21st century, with people today living in such close proximity. The draft bill includes clarification of the responsibilitites of the tree's owner. Read more at the Qld Govt website here: Neighbourhood disputes over trees and fences to be easier to resolve (May 2010)

Big Tree Database for Australia
Ever wondered how big the largest specimen of a tree species is, or where it's located? A National Register of Big Trees is now being established to collect such information for Australia. Members of the public will be able to nominate native or exotic trees of significance in parks and gardens as well as natural habitats. Learn more at the website: National Register of Big Trees

Tree of Kowledge goes to university
One 25 plants propagated from Barcaldine's "Tree of Knowledge" after it's 2006 poisoning has been donated to the University of Queensland and has found a home at the St Lucia campus. Source: Knowledge planted at UQ (November 2009)

Can trees reduce your electricity bills?
A study of homes in Sacramento, California have shown that well-positioned shade trees can reduce summer electricity use by 5 percent, but unsuitable placement can actually increase it. Further studies in other cities of the world, and in wintertime, are needed to see how trees affect electricity use across geographic locality and season. However, urban trees have potential to reduce atmospheric carbon both by reducing electricity demand and incorporating of carbon in their wood as they grow. Source: New Study: Home Energy Savings Are Made in the Shade (May 2009)

Dead tree still has a role to play in Townsville landscape
After assessment by an arborist, an old gum in Pioneer Park, Townsville has been judged beyond help and a significant risk to public safety. The good news for residents and wildlife is that after cutting back of branches and poisoning (to prevent regrowth), the trunk will be retained as a nesting site. A replacement shade tree will also be planted nearby. Read more: Council to manage declining gum tree (2008)

Caloundra Tree Poisonings
Two trees in Bulcock St and five in Happy valley have been poisoned. The apparently unrelated attacks were probably attempt to improve views. Caloundra City Council is urging anyone with information to contact them or the Police. Senseless vandalism destroys living heritage (March 2008)

One of Rocky's favourite trees collapses
An Enterolobium cyclocarpum that had been a feature of the Rockhampton Botanic Gardens for over 30 years has collapsed during heavy wind and rain. In spite of the unromantic common name of "Ear Tree" (due to the shape of the seedpods), the old tree was a popular site for weddings. Staff intend to plant another one soon. Meanwhile, anyone who has a booked a function at the Ear Tree should contact the Gardens. More information from the Rockhampton Botanic Gardens here: Botanic Gardens Icon Collapses ( January 2008)

More shade trees for Gold Coast
Unhappy with the amount of shade in the city, the Gold Coast City Council has reviewed its free plant scheme. Free shrubs and groundcovers are to be eliminated, but shade trees will continue to be offered. The planned Residential Tree Scheme and Street Tree Scheme are part of the Council's strategy to create Australia's "most attractive and shaded city". More information at the Council's website here: Free Tree Scheme to Green the City

Avenues of Honour
The Avenue of Honour Project 1915-2015 aims to document, preserve and restore trees planted to honour servicemen and women in the last century, in addition to planting new ones, in time for the Centenary of the Anzac in 2015. Many coummunity groups and government bodies (including Brisbane City Council - More information about their participation HERE) are collaborating with the RSL and TREENET on this project. If you have any information about memorial trees in your district, or you would just like to learn more about the project, visit the website: TREENET Avenues of Honour Project

Trees increase property values
Research indicates that the top five suburbs in Brisbane (rated by median house price) are all well furnished with street trees. In contrast, some of the poorest performing areas have few trees. Read the Real Estate Institute of Queensland (REIQ) media release


Feature Article

Safetree: "powerline friendly approved"

A collaboration betweeen ENERGEX and Greening Australia, the Safetree program aims to encourage responsible planting under and near powerlines. This includes the powerline connected to your home.

To help homeowners select appropriate tree and shrub species, a list of over 100 "Safetrees" has been developed. "Safetrees" share the following characteristics:
  - suitable for south east Queensland
  - grow less than 4 metres tall
  - reasonably long lifespan
  - low susceptibility to pests and diseases
  - don't tend to shed material excessively
  - not poisonous
  - readily available

The list includes native and exotic species. Some are bird attracting. Others provide shade, flowers or fruit. You're sure to find something to suit your garden in the Safetree Planting Guide, which you can download from the ENERGEX site in PDF form: www.energex.com.au/pdf/network/planting_guide_LR.pdf

Alternatively, look for plants with Safetree tags and signage at participating garden centres.

More information about the Safetree Program is available via the following links:
ENERGEX safetree program ENERGEX
Energex Safetree Program Greening Australia

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