Form: tree — perennial
Status: present in WA
Athel pine, also known as tamarisk or tamarix, is a tree to 15 metres in height, it is not a true pine tree. It is a Weed of National Significance.
Young trees have a light grey trunk; mature trees have a dark grey or black trunk and can reach one metre in diameter. The main infestation in WA is in the bed of the Gascoyne River at Carnarvon. It spreads by seed and vegetatively from broken branches that become buried. There are other Tamarix species present in Australia that could be confused with T. aphylla, some are used as garden plants.
Leaves: The dull green or greyish leaves are similar to pine needles.
Flowers: The small pinkish-white flowers occur in sprays on the ends of the previous year’s branches.
Seeds: After flowering, athel pine produces many small, bell-shaped fruits, each containing many seeds. The seeds are roughly cylindrical, each having a small 'parachute' of hairs to aid dispersal by the wind.
Agricultural and economic impact
An environment weed.
Declared pest category
The Western Australian Organism List (WAOL) contains information on the area(s) in which this pest is declared and the control and keeping categories to which it has been assigned in Western Australia (WA). Use the links on this page to reach athel pine in WAOL.
Requirements for land owners/occupiers and other persons
Requirements for land owners/occupiers and other persons if this pest is found can be sourced through the declared plant requirements link.
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Control methods for this declared plant can be found through the athel pine control link.