Plants of
South Australia
Allocasuarina striata
Casuarinaceae
Tall Oak-bush
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Regional Species Conservation Assessments per IBRA subregion.
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Botanical art

Kath Alcock painting: 1.

Etymology

Allocasuarina from the Greek 'allos' meaning other or different, indicating the relationship with the genus Casuarina (first used by Rumphius (1743) in allusion to the supposed resemblance of the "foliage" of Casuarina equisetifolia to the plumage of the Cassowary, which is from the Malay 'kesuari', later being latinised as Casuarius). Striata from Latin meaning striped, referring to the striated articles.

Distribution and status

Endemic to South Australia and found only on Kangaroo Island and the southern Mount Lofty Ranges, growing in heath on lateritic or sandy soils. Native. Common in South Australia.
Herbarium regions: Southern Lofty, Kangaroo Island
NRM regions: Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, Kangaroo Island
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)

Plant description

Dioecious or monoecious shrub or small tree to 4 m high. Articles (stem segment) terete, smooth, striate to 2 cm long with 7 erect teeth (reduced leaves) around the end. Male spikes to 3 cm long, slender, with 5-7 whorls per cm. Female flower yellow-brown to 1.3 mm long. Fruits are small, woody cylindrical cone with numerous valves. Seeds are smooth semi-flat black seeds to 4 mm long with a papery wing at one end. Seed embryo type is investing.

Seed collection and propagation

Collect seeds between January and December. Cones can be collected anytime as mature cones remain on the female plant. Collect cones that have closed valves from the lower part of the stem as these are more mature. Place cones in a paper bag and leave to dry for 2-3 weeks. This will allow the valves to dry and open, releasing the seeds. Then place the cones in a bucket and shake gently to dislodge the seeds. Use a sieve to separate seeds from unwanted material. Store the seeds with a desiccant such as dried silica beads or dry rice, in an air tight container in a cool and dry place. From one collection, the seed viability was low, at 30%. Seeds are non-dormant, viable seed should germinate readily.

Seeds stored:
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LocationNo. of seeds
(weight grams)
Number
of plants
Date
collected
Collection number
Collection location
Date
stored
% ViabilityStorage
temperature
BGA 
MSB
9,700 (18.48 g)
9,700 (18.48 g)
1825-Oct-2005DJD154
Southern Lofty
28-Jul-200630%-18°C
Location: BGA — the seeds are stored at the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, MSB — the seeds are stored at the Millennium Seed Bank, Kew, England.
Number of plants: This is the number of plants from which the seeds were collected.
Collection location: The Herbarium of South Australia's region name.
% Viability: Percentage of filled healthy seeds determined by a cut test or x-ray.