Gymnosperm Database
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Cones, bark, and foliage on a tree at Royal Botanical Gardens Kew [C.J. Earle, 2010.06.14].


Distribution of Callitris rhomboidea (Bowman and Harris 1995). Basemap from Expedia Maps. You can also create a highly detailed map, and access specimen data, using the "search" function at the Australia Virtual Herbarium.


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Conservation status

Callitris rhomboidea

R. Brown ex A. Rich. et Rich. 1826

Common names

Cypress pine, Port Jackson pine, Oyster Bay Pine (Dallimore et al. 1967), dune cypress pine (Anonymous 2002).

Taxonomic notes

Syn: C. cupressiformis F. Mueller; C. tasmanica (Bentham) R. T. Baker and H. G. Smith; Frenela attenuata A. Cunningham; F. rhomboidea Endlicher; F. triquetra Spach; Cupressus australis Desfontaine; Thuja australis Poiret; T. articulata Tenore (Dallimore et al. 1967).


Small tree 9-15 m tall, diameter 29-44 cm, with a narrow, dense head of branches divided into a mass of small, slender sprays. Leaves bright green or glaucous, 2-3 mm long, closely pressed to the branchlets throughout their length, keeled dorsally, terminating in a short point. Female cones usually clustered on fruiting branches, remaining long after maturity, globose to depressed-globose, 8-20 mm diameter, grey-brown; cone scales 6, thick, rhomboidal, smooth with a prominent, pointed central boss, alternate scales about half the size of the larger, larger scales broader above and abruptly angled into a short wide apex; columella mostly short, occasionally to 3 mm long, 3-lobed or with 3 separate parts. Seeds dark brown, rounded, small, with 2 very narrow wings (Dallimore et al. 1967, Harden 1990).

Distribution and Ecology

Australia: Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania, & South Australia. Naturalized near Auckland, New Zealand (Dallimore et al. 1967). "Grows in woodland, on the coast and tablelands; widespread, but not common" (Harden 1990). Hardy to Zone 9 (cold hardiness limit between -6.6°C and -1.1°C) (Bannister and Neuner 2001).

Big tree

A tree in Nelson Square, Picton, NZ was 7.5 m tall and 80.2 cm dbh when measured in February, 2012 (Notable Trees of New Zealand 2012).




"Timber used locally for buildings and poles, but not plentiful enough to be of any particular economic importance" (Dallimore et al. 1967).

This is the most ornamental of the native cypresses. It is tolerant of poor soils and coastal conditions, but drought sensitive on shallow soils (Anonymous 2002).




Anonymous. 2002., accessed 2002.01.18, now defunct.

Notable Trees of New Zealand. Record MR/0956., accessed 2012.03.08.

Richard, L.C.M. 1826. Commentatio botanica de Conifereis et Cycadeis. Stuttgart: J.G. Cotta.

See also

Farjon (2005) provides a detailed account, with illustrations.

Last Modified 2013-12-18