Tree Species Profile: Black Bean Tree

Black Bean Tree, also commonly referred to as Castanospermum Australe, is a flowering plant that uniquely stands out as the only species under the narrow Castanospermum. A moderately rare variety that’s found in select locales such as Australia in Queensland, Papua New Guinea, and New South Wales, this cadre of trees are widely recognised for their adaptive capacity to amass iminosugars within their amazing foliage. moreton-bay-chestnut

Sometimes known as Moreton Bay Chestnut, this chiefly hardy species is particularly suited for a varying range of climatic conditions throughout Australia. Like many other tree types out there, this rather lofty plant’s growth rates vary from one environment to another. For example, Black Bean Tree grows to an estimated 8 meters in Melbourne. Even though the generally less demanding stems require uninterrupted sunlight right from germination to maturity, it doesn’t wholly disappoint even in surrounds without consistent light.

If grown under rigorous cultivation, the tree ranges anywhere between 8 and 20 meters, depending on a host of more detailed factors. Under the aforestated environments, the variety normally assumes a rounded canopy span measuring up to 8 meters. As such, this excellent growth tendencies render the species an inimitable choice for natural park shades, one of the most exquisite garden vegetation options, and also an awesome pick for nurturing in resorts or such other recreational grounds.

By the same token, Moreton Bay Chestnut makes for a perfect species for consolidating river banks against likely erosion given the fact that it has an extensively webbed root system. All the same, the same may not be somewhat ideal for largely rocky embankments since proper root spread might truncate it’s very basic natural growth and even it’s core viability as a soil consolidating plant. Regardless of the foregoing caveat, you ought to emphatically note that the tree can yet penetrate fairly stone-filled soils that other roots types will doubtless find somehow impermeable.

Despite the plant’s seeds being quite safe for human consumption once refined meticulously, they have been discovered to be outright lethal to domestic animals. Because the lengthy preparatory process for these seeds shouldn’t be carelessly due to the high risks of self-poisoning, some wary Australian natives chose to shun them as food. In order to remove all the venomous traces, the seeds should be painstakingly roasted, sliced into fine bits, leached with running severally and for many days, and finally be pounded into flour.

Additionally, Castanospermum Australe is a treasured source of walnut-like hardwood timber. In fact, it’s timber ranks among the most hard-wearing categories obtained locally. The leaves, just like the animal-endangering seeds, are highly perilous to livestock and pets as well. By the same token, the variety’s peculiarly wide-reaching root system makes it a poor choice for soils close to drainage piping, swimming facilities, sewerage lines, or fairly deep-going house foundations.

Arborists usually start growing Moreton Bay Chestnut right from seed germination. Transfer from nursery to the main field should be carried out after the shoots develop the first pair of true leaves. The tenderlings also ought to be cultivated on a loose soil and watered sparing as over-watering is a sure recipe for fungal tooth rot. Mulching isn’t bad, although it shouldn’t be recklessly undertaken. Finally, liquid NPK fertilisers may be added, but not earlier than 3 months after germination.


Tree Species Profile: Australian Teak

Gold Coast Australia walk ways are beautiful and shady, thanks to tree species like the Australian Teak. Scientifically called Flindersia Australis, the Australian Teak is a tall semi-deciduous tree with a scary brown bark and a dense crown. It belongs to the family Rutaceae. Other names used to refer to the tree are Crow Ash, Flinders Ash, Flindosy, or nut wood. Just like other species in this genus, Flindersia Australis is named after the explorer, Matthew Flinders. 

The tree grows fast in humid subtropical to tropical climates. In fact, it’s one of the fastest growing teaks here in Australia and other parts of the world. It grows to a height of 30 to 40m and a diameter of about 4 metres. The crown is made up of large, compound leaves with 7 to 15 lanceolate serrated leaflets. Such a crown makes a good shade. Flowers are small and creamy white in colour. They are stacked in a number good enough for a great display. The tree has a 5-segmented fruit that contains attractive winged seeds. With these characteristics, the Australian Teak is beautiful as a street tree as well as when planted in parks.

Uses of the Australian TeakAustralian Teak

– Crow ash is a Nitrogen fixing plant. It fertilises the soil and prevents soil erosion.

– Due to its dense crown, it acts as a good windbreaker when planted on peripheries.

– Multicrops such as Beetle leaf and Pepper find the tree a perfect crop to creep on. 

– The Australian Teak is well known for industrial and commercial purposes. Most popular uses include making furniture and cabinets and for particle board manufacturing.

– The timber is also used for flooring and boat building.


Australian Teak plantation growth and development

There are many factors that affect the success of planting programs for Crow ash. These factors include site, seed quality and seed supply, and management. Site is the most significant factor of these factors. So, what are the characteristics of the best site to grow the Australia Teak?


The Australian Teak

1. Rainfall and moisture requirements: Most Flinders Ash plantations in Australia are found in the humid rainforests of the east coast. Under the very moist conditions in the area, the tree grows large and fluted, behaving like a semi-arid evergreen species. However, the wood quality is poor in density, texture and colour. Teak grown in areas with lower rainfall (between 1,200 and 2,500 mm) provides timber of a higher quality. Under very dry conditions, the Australian teak is stunted and shrubby.

2. Light: Crow Ash requires high light intensity for optimum growth and development. Study results have shown that light intensity has a significant effect on the dry matter of seedlings. According to a 1974 study, it was found out that dry matter production decreases sharply as light intensity decreases.

3. Soil: Deep, well-drained alluvial soils are the best soils for the growth of the Australian Teak. The tree performs well in soils derived from schist, limestone, gneiss, shale and a selection of volcanic rocks including basalt. Worst performance is recorded on shallow soil, acidic soils, dry sandy soils, or waterlogged soils.

4. Temperature levels: Flinders Ash performs best under warm conditions (around 27-36 Celsius) which is normal here in Gold Coast Australia as well as within other sub-tropical climates. The tree poorly tolerates very cold conditions such as frost during winter. During such times, the seedlings and saplings get severely damaged and most of them die.