Australian Red Cedar


Toona ciliata, also known as the Australian Red Cedar, is a large deciduous tree native to eastern Australia’s warm temperate and sub-tropical rainforests. Its native range extends from Queensland to the south of Ulladulla, on mostly basalt-rich volcanic soils. Much of their original range was extensively cleared for agriculture. The tree can grow up to 30-40 meters in height and 10 to 15 meters in width, with a straight trunk, buttressing over time and a conical crown of dark green leaves with red new growth.

It grows best in an environment with high light levels; however, in the relative darkness of the rainforest understorey, it is less susceptible to attack by the cedar tip moth. Toona ciliata prefers well-drained, moist, and rich soils with a pH range of 5 – 6.5. It can tolerate a wide range of soils but prefers slightly acidic soils. The tree is drought-tolerant and can tolerate heat, frost and moderate salinity. It prefers full sun but can tolerate partial shade. It is one of Australia’s few native deciduous trees, with the leaves falling in autumn (late March) and growing in spring (early September). The new leaf growth is reddish pink in colour.

It is essential to ensure that the tree is planted in an area with enough room to grow, as it can reach a height of 30-40 meters and a spread of 10-15 meters. When planting, it is vital to ensure the soil is well-prepared, removing debris and loose rocks and amending the soil with organic matter if necessary. It is also critical to ensure that the tree is planted at the same depth as the container and to water it well after planting.


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