Family: Casuarinaceae
Common Name: She-oak

The 60 species in this Australian genus were formerly included in Casuarina which now has fewer than 20 species. These evergreen trees and shrubs mostly have drooping foliage, with the true leaves reduced to very small scales where the needle-like branchlets join. Male and female flowers are borne on separate trees and wind-pollinated. After flowering, woody cones of various shapes and sizes are produced. In suitable Climates, many are fast growers and are used for windbreaks, shade and shelter.


A. decaisneana, desert oak, grows to 6-12 m (20-40 ft), with a straight trunk, graceful gray-green weeping foliage and large, cylindrical woody cones. This is an ideal tree for harsh, hot, arid conditions.

A. littoralis, black she-oak, is a coastal species tolerant of poor soils and exposed conditions. It is fast-growing, reaching 9 m (30 ft) and, although adaptable to a range of conditions, is best grown in warmer areas.

A. verticillata (Synonyms: A. stricta), drooping she-oak, is a graceful small tree reaching 7-10 m (23-33 ft), although much smaller in exposed windy or seaside situations. Once established, it is tolerant of light frosts and drought.


In frost-prone Climates, grow in pots of soil-based potting compost in a cool conservatory or greenhouse. These trees and shrubs are best grown in full sun. Most prefer good quality soil and ample summer moisture.


This genus is suitable for zone 9 and above.

Allium      Alloxylon