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Celery Top Pine (Phyllcocladus aspleniifolius )

Celery Top Pine  (Phyllcocladus aspleniifolius )
 
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SKU SKUCeleryPine
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Celery Top pine

Phyllcocladus aspleniifolius

The Tree
One of the best known of Tasmania's native conifers. Medium-sized, commonly 20-30m tall and .5-.9m in diameter. The stem is usually well-formed even when growing on very poor soils. Lower branches are usually horizontal and occur in whorls. Bark is dark grey or reddish brown with numerous bark pores which give it a knobbly appearance, often deeply furrowed in older trees. Grows very slowly, and trees with a diameter of .6m are commonly up to 400 years old. The oldest known trees are about 800 years old. Can easily be identified by its distinctive celery-like foliage.

Leaves, Cones & Seeds
"Leaves" on mature plants are really flattened, highly modified branches. These look like leathery, irregularly lobed leaves 3-8cm long, 2cm wide. Very young seedlings have needle-like leaves. The pollen and seed are borne in modified cones. Both male and female cones are very small. Seeds are black, partially closed in a white membrane which is set in a fleshy purple receptacle. Birds eat the receptacles and can disperse seed over long distances.

Habitat
Occurs only in Tasmania. Common in the west of the State and also occurs in isolated patches in the east. A dominant tree in cool temperate rainforest, an understorey tree in eucalypt forest, and can occur as a shrub in alpine vegetation. Most abundant on poor soils and is often associated with a dense tangled understorey

Timber
The timber is a pale straw colour when freshly cut and darkens to a pleasing gold with age. It is hard, strong and dense (650kg/m at 12% moisture content) and has no odour or taste. Relatively heavy for a pine. It is durable in contact with the ground if the sapwood is removed. It has good dimensional stability in cross section but can shrink along its length upon drying. There are a large number of knots, particularly in timbers from smaller trees

Uses
Boat building, joinery, bench tops, flooring. In recent years it has become popular for external cladding in houses. It is also used for outdoor and indoor furniture, kitchen cupboards and wall panelling. It is suitable for turning especially for spindle work.

Availability
The annual cut is about 6000m3, mostly by sawmills in the North West. In recent years kiln-dried as well as green timber is being sold, and in a variety of mouldings.

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