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Zones 8, 9, 12-24, H1, H2
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Moderate, Minimal

Casuarina

Beefwood, She-oak
Casuarinaceae
Evergreen, Trees

Native primarily to Australia. At first glance, these look something like pines; their thin, jointed, green branches look like long pine needles. True leaves are inconspicuous. These trees tolerate dry or wet soil, salinity, heat, and wind, and they’re hardy to 15°F (–9°C). Especially useful in desert areas, where they are often confused with Athel tamarisk (Tamarix aphylla) because of similar foliage—but the casuarinas have conelike fruit. Cones range from 1/4–1 in. long. Little pruning is required.

Casuarina cunninghamiana

Largest and tallest species. Grows to 70 ft. tall, 30 ft. wide. Finest texture, with dark green branches.

Casuarina equisetifolia (photo courtesy of Joshua McCullough/PhytoPhoto)
Casuarina equisetifolia (photo courtesy of Joshua McCullough/PhytoPhoto)

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Casuarina equisetifolia

Fast grower to 40–60 ft. tall, 20 ft. wide. Has pendulous gray-green branches.

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