Athrotaxis cupressoides

Pencil Pine

Family Taxodiaceae

Botanical name. Athrotaxis comes from two Greek words athros= crowded, and taxis= arrangement, referring to the overlapping arrangement of the leaves. The species name cupressoides is a Greek word meaning 'resembling cypress'.

distribution mapHabitat. These trees live in Tasmanian mountain rainforests at 700­1500 m above sea level.

Features. Pencil Pines grow to 15 m, live up to 1300 years and grow very slowly (1­2 mm in diameter per year). They reproduce vegetatively (by suckering from the roots) as well as from seed. The male and female cones are found on the same tree.

drawingEuropean use. The timber is soft and pale reddish in colour and it is valuable for cabinet work, panels in houses and, in the past, was used for coach building.

photo of trees in landscape

Education Service - Australian National Botanic Gardens