Wood Species Guide

Australian Cypress

Australian Cypress

Scientific Name: Callitris glauca

Other Names and Species: Cypress-Pine, Murray Pine, Murray River Cypress, Murray River Pine

Origin: New South Wales and Queensland, Australia

Appearance: There is a high degree of color variability in Australian cypress, as the sapwood can be cream- or straw-colored, while the heartwood ranges from honey-gold to brown, with darker knots throughout to add character. For a warm, rustic, "country" look, Australian cypress is an excellent choice. Over time there may be some slight ambering or muting of color tones. It has a fine, lustrous texture with a typically straight grain. The wood has an aromatic camphor-like odor.

Properties: This species grows in a semi-arid area of Australia, which bestows on it the unique property of being the only commercial softwood that is actually harder than red oak — making it superior for both residential and commercial use. Because of its relative hardness and excellent durability, Australian cypress wood flooring has very good dimensional stability; however, in actual installations, significant movement can sometimes be seen.

Workability: While Australian cypress has good sanding and machining qualities, like Brazilian cherry it can be brittle, so care must be taken when nailing.

Principal Uses: This wood is most often used in light construction, such as flooring, siding, and joinery, as well as in decorative veneers and furniture components.