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Warm, dense and resilient, Tasmanian Oak is the preferred hardwood for a wide range of applications.
It works extremely well and produces an excellent finish. It can be used in all forms of construction as scantlings, paneling and flooring, and can be glue-laminated to cover long spans. Veneers, plywood and engineered products are also available. It is also a popular furniture timber, and eucalypt fibre is sought after for reconstituted board and production of high quality paper.
Tasmanian Oak is light in colour, varying from straw to reddish brown with intermediate shades of cream to pink. It is recognised for its excellent staining qualities, which allow ready matching with other timbers, finishes or furnishings.
The species grow in native forests. E. delegatensis is the dominant forest species in cooler, higher altitudes. E. obliqua is mainly found in lower altitudes, but ranges from the coast to 600m in hilly or mountainous country. E. regnans is widespread but it prefers well-drained soils in areas of high rainfall and low fire frequency.
Mature E. obliqua and mature E. delegatensis will survive even severe wildfires in contrast to the fire sensitive E. regnans, which does not survive even low intensity fires.
Seedlings of all three species establish best after fire has exposed bare mineral soils, with minimum leaf litter.
They thrive when they are not overshadowed. The species are generally not successful as plantation stock as the seedlings do not respond well after transplanting.
These three species occur in Dry Eucalypt and Wet Eucalypt native forest types. 35% of these forest types is in reserve.
As the tallest flowering plant in the world, E. regnans grow up to 100m. E. delegatensis and E. obliqua do not reach these heights, reaching about 70m with the tallest trees achieving 90m.
The species produce buds in clusters of seven or more, with white cream flowers. The flowers are hermaphroditic.
The leaves are asymmetrical and rounder in shape in their juvenile forms. E. regnans has green, asymmetrical lance-shaped leaves. E. obliqua has asymmetrical glossy green, leathery lance-shaped leaves while E. delegatensis has dull blue-green asymmetrical sickle-shaped leaves.
The bark of each of these species is characteristically ‘stringy’. E. obliqua’s bark is rough and persistent to the small branches. E. regnans’ rough bark sheds in long ribbons and is often seen hanging from the branches. E. delegatensis has reddish-brown to grey bark with longitudinal furrows on the lower trunk.