The RIC Good Wood Guide

Please Avoid these Australian Species

(See also Species also Available from Plantations, and Rainforest Logging below)

The following tree species 1, apart from those marked otherwise, are taken exclusively from old growth or so-called regrowth forests and cannot be recommended, unless the timber is second hand or ethically salvaged.

Order of Listing:

SPECIES (Botanical Name), Other Names, Sources / Comments - re origins, etc.

Ash, Alpine (P) (Eucalyptus delegatensis) Victorian Ash, Tasmanian Oak 2, Australian Oak - Tas, Vic, Sth-East NSW

Ash, Canary (see Yellow Walnut)

Ash, Mountain (Eucalyptus regnans) Tasmanian Oak 2 - Tas, Eastern Vic

Ash, Pigeonberry (see Rose Maple)

Ash, Red (Alphitonea excelsa) - coastal rainforests of NSW & Qld.

Ash, Silver (Flindersia schottiana) Bumpy Ash, Cudgerie - NSW, Qld

Ash, Silvertop (OS) (Eucalyptus sieberi) Coast Ash - this is one of the major woodchip export timbers to Japan from Eden in southern NSW.

Ash, Victorian - see Mountain Ash and/or Alpine Ash

Alder, Brown (Caldcluvia paniculosa) - nthn Qld

Alder, Rose (Caldcluvia australiensis) - nthn Qld

Bean, Black (OS) (Castanospermum australe) Moreton Bay Chestnut - nthn NSW - nth Qld

Bean, Red (Dysoxylon muelleri)

Beech, Antarctic (Nothofagus moorei) Niggerhead Beech - found throughout Australasia

Beech, Bolly (Litsea reticulata)

Beech, Brown (Cryptocarya glaucescens) ?

Beech, Myrtle (Nothofagus cunninghamii) Tasmanian Myrtle - Tas, Eastern Victoria

Beech, Silky (villaresia moorei) - coastal rainforests of NSW and Qld

Beech, White (Gmelina leichhardtii, etc) Grey Teak, Colonial Beech - NSW, Qld, PNG

Birch, White (Schizomeria ovata) Crabapple - coastal rainforests of NSW and Qld

Blackbutt, New England (Eucalyptus andrewsii) - nthn NSW, sthn Qld (Recycled Blackbutt is available from Nullarbor Forest Industries - see Timber Recyclers in the Alternative Directory). NB: Blackbutt (E. pilularis) is a plantation-grown timber.

Blackbutt, West Australian (Eucalyptus patens) Parri - found in Jarrah & Karri forests of south-west W.A.; in short supply.

Blackwood (Acacia melanoxylon) - Tas, SA, Vic, NSW, Qld (See also Wattle, under Salvaged Timber from Urban & Rural Sources).

Bloodwood (Eucalyptus intermedia)

Bollywood, Brown (Litsea leefeana) - coastal rainforests from Central Coast NSW to nthn Qld

Booyong (Argyrodendrum trifoliatum) Brown/Tulip Oak, Crows Foot Elm - NSW, Qld

Box, Black (Eucalyptus largiflorens?)

Box, Grey (Eucalyptus mollucana) - Vic, NSW

Box, Inland Grey (Eucalyptus microcarpa) - NSW, sthn Qld, Vic

Box, Red (Eucalyptus polyanthema) - Victoria

Box, Satin ?

Box, White (Eucalyptus albens)

Box, White Topped (Eucalyptus quadrangulata) - NSW, sthn Qld

Box, Yellow (Eucalyptus melliodora) - Vic, NSW, Qld

Brushbox (R) (Tristania conferta/Lophostemon confertus) - nthn NSW to sthn Qld; rainforest edge species

Butternut, Rose (Blepharocarya involucrigera) - nthn Qld

Canary Ash (Beilschmiedia bancroftii)

Candlenut (Aleurites moluccana) - nthn Qld

Carabeen, Red (Geissos benthamiana) Brush Mahogany - Nthn NSW - sthn Qld

Carabeen, White (Sloanea langii) Qld

Carabeen, Yellow (Sloanea woollsii) - nthn NSW, sthn Qld

Carabeen, Nthn Yellow (Sloanea macbrydei) Grey Carabeen - Qld

Cedar, Red (OS) (Toona australis) E Aust (rare) - PNG, Sth-East Asia

Cedar, White (Melia azedarach) Tulip Cedar - Coastal NSW to Qld

Cheesewood, White (Alstonia scholaris) Milkwood - nthn Qld, PNG, S-E Asia

Coachwood (Ceropetalum apetalum) - Nthn NSW, sthn Qld

Crows Ash (Flindersia australis) NSW Teak, Colonial Teak - nthn NSW, Qld

Cudgerie, Brown (Canarium australasicum) - nthn NSW, Qld

Cypress Pine3 (OS) (Callitris collumelaris) Murray Pine, Western Cypress Pine - NSW, Qld

Cypress, Black3 (Callitris endlicheri) - NSW, Qld, Vic

Cypress, White3 (Callitris glauca) - inland NSW- Qld

Damson (Terminalia sericocarpa) Sovereign Wood - Qld rainforests

Deep Yellowwood (Rhodosphaera rhodanthema) Tulip Satinwood

Ebony, Black ?

Ebony, Grey ?

Gum, Flooded (P) (OS) (R) (Eucalyptus grandis) Rose Gum - central NSW to nthn Qld; a species often found on rainforest edges.

Gum, Grey (Eucalyptus propinqua) - NSW, Qld

Gum, Manna (Eucalyptus viminalis) Ribbon Gum - SA, Tas, Vic, NSW; important koala habitat; some species of gliders feed on the sap and new leaves.

Gum, Mountain Grey (Eucalyptus cypellocarpa) Monkey Gum - Vic, sthn NSW

Gum, River Red (P) (OS) (Eucalyptus camaldulensis) Red Gum - Inland rivers - sthn mainland Aust.

Gum, Shining (Eucalyptus nitens) - Vic-NSW

Huon Pine (see Pine, Huon)

Ironbark, Grey (Eucalyptus paniculata) - NSW, Qld

Ironbark, Narrow Leaved Red (Eucalyptus crebra) - NSW, Qld

Ironbark, Red (Eucalyptus sideroxylon) - Vic, NSW, Qld Ironbark, Silver (Eucalyptus melanophloia ?)

Jarrah (P) (Eucalyptus marginata) - sth-west W.A.; threatened by dieback, bauxite mining and controlled burns, which favour banksias. Plantation sources are extremely limited. Regrowth forest sources are not proven as environmentally sustainable.

Johnson River Hardwood (Backhousia bancroftii) - nthn Qld

Kamala, Red (Mallotus philippensis) - Eastern Aust. rainforests

Karri (P) (OS) (Eucalyptus diversicolor) - sth-West WA (See comments re environmental status of Jarrah)

Kauri, Queensland (Agathis palmerstonii) - nthn Qld

Kauri Pine (P) (Agathis robusta) sthn Qld Kauri - Qld (Maryborough district)

Kauri, Bull (P) (Agathis microstachya) nthn Qld Kauri - Cairns district

King William Pine (Athrotaxis selaginoides) - TAS

Mahogany, Rose (Dysoxylon fraseranum) Rosewood - NSW, Qld

Mallee Timbers (Eucalyptus spp - about 17) - Western NSW, Vic

Malletwood (Rhodamnia arquentea) - Qld rainforests

Maple, Queensland (P) (Flindersia brayleyana) - nthn Qld, PNG

Maple, Rose (Cryptocarpa erythoxylon) Pigeonberry Ash - NSW, Qld

Mararie (Pseudoweinmannia lachnocarpa) - NSW, Qld

Marri (Eucalyptus callophylla) - occurs in Jarrah and Karri forests of sth-West W.A.; principal species woodchipped in W.A.

Messmate (P) (Eucalyptus obliqua) Messmate Stringybark, Tasmanian Oak, Peppermint - Tas, Vic, NSW, sthn Qld

Messmate, Gympie (P) (Eucalyptus cloeziana) - Qld

Myrtle, Tasmanian (Nothofagus cunninghamii) Myrtle Beech - Rainforests of Tas & Vic.

Oak, Tasmanian (see Alpine Ash &/or Mountain Ash &/or Messmate)

Oak, White (Stenocarpus sinuatus) Firewheel Tree - East Coast rainforests

Onionwood (Owenia cepiodora) - nthn NSW

Pine, Brown (Podocarpus elatus) - rainforests of NSW and Qld

Pine, Bunya (P) (Araucaria bidwilli) - Sth-East Qld

Pine, Celery Top (Phyllocladus asplenifolius) - Tas

Pine, Hoop (P) (Araucaria cunninghamii) - nth NSW, Qld, PNG

Pine, Huon (Dacrydium franklinii/Lagarostrobus franklinii) Macquarie Pine - Sth-West Tas

Pine, King William (Athrotaxis selaginoides) - West Tas

Quandong, Silver (Elaeocarpus grandis) Blueberry Ash, Blue Fig - NSW, Qld

Rosewood (Dysoxylum fraseranum) Rose Mahogany - rainforests of Central Coast NSW to Sth-East Qld

Sassafras (Dyophora sassafras) Yellow Sassafras, Golden Deal - NSW, Qld

Sassafras, Southern (Atherosperma moschatum) Tasmanian Sassafras - Tas, small areas in Vic, NSW

Satinay (OS) (Syncarpia hillii) Fraser Is. Turpentine - Fraser Is. (sthn Qld)

Silkwood (Flindersia pimenteliana) Maple Silkwood - nthn Qld

Silkwood, Bolly (Cryptocarya oblata) Tarzali Silkwood, Mazlin's Beech - nthn Qld

Silkwood, Silver (Flindersia acuminata) Putts Pine - nthn Qld

Silky Oak, Northern (Cardwellia sublimis) Bull Silky Oak - central & nthn Qld (OK if from suburbia)

Silky Oak, Southern (P) (OS) (Grevillea Robusta) - NSW, Qld (OK if from suburbia)

Teak, Australian (see Crows Ash)

Teak, NSW (see Crows Ash)

Tulip Oak, Red (Argyrodendron peralatum) - nthn Qld

Turpentine, Fraser Is. (see Satinay)

Walnut, Queensland (Endiandra palmerstonii) Black Walnut, Australian Walnut, Oriental Wood - nthn Qld

Walnut, NSW (Endiandra virens) - nthn NSW

Walnut, Blush (Beilschmeidia obtusifolia) - NSW, Qld

Walnut, White (Cryptocarya obovata)

Walnut, Yellow (Beilschmedia bancroftii) Canary Ash - nthn Qld

Wattle, Silver (Acacia dealbata) - all eastern states. (See also Salvaged Timber from Urban & Rural Sources).


(P) = Plantation Sources Available

(OS) = Also Overseas-grown

(R) = rainforest species


Certain species, as noted in the table, are also available in limited quantities from plantations, but please make doubly sure that the timber is from a plantation source before you contemplate purchasing any of them.

A prime example of this is Hoop pine, which is available in abundance from plantations in northern NSW and throughout Queensland. Unfortunately, there are quantities of old growth forest Hoop pines being taken from private landholdings in Queensland, as are other rainforest species. Old growth Hoop pine is most readily discernible by the presence of knots and the overall larger formats (dimensions) of the timber. Plantation Hoop is generally knot-free, due to its having been silviculturally treated during its growth cycle. (See also Australian Grown Plantation Species)


There is a general moratorium on the logging of public land rainforest in NSW and Queensland. However, rainforest trees are routinely illegally felled after being misclassified as non-rainforest species (and many private landowners are only too happy to convert their trees to cash).

Brushbox and Tallowwood trees for instance, grow as a Eucalypt emergents in rainforest. This type of forest is then re-classified as sclerophyll forest; so, what is really rainforest is destroyed to gain access to the Brushboxes and Tallowwoods.

1. NB: Much of this species information comes from Wood in Australia by Keith Bootle, A Glossary of Wood by Thomas Corkhill, and Horticultural Information by Jones.

2. NB: Both Alpine Ash (Eucalyptus delegatensis) and Mountain Ash (Eucalyptus regnans) both share the alternative name of 'Tasmanian Oak'. In fact, Corkhill (see above) says 'Mountain Ash' can refer to either E. delegatensis or E. regnans. Both are very similar woods. Corkhill also says 'Tasmanian Oak' may refer to Messmate (E. obliqua).


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