Kirrarrk

(KEED-ahdk)

Casuarina

Casuarina equisetifolia

Description

A tree to 14 m high; leaves tiny scales around needle-like green branchlets; flowers small, inconspicuous; fruit in globular woody cones to 2 cm long. Found on coastal sand dunes and beaches. Fruit April-September.

Uses

This tree produces very hard wood. The timber may be used to make arrilil 'clapsticks'. It is also excellent firewood as it burns evenly and slowly. The seeds are eaten by karak 'black cockatoos' who pull the fruit open to get the seeds.

(Source: Blake, N., Wightman, G., and Williams, L. 1998. Iwaidja Ethnobotany, p. 48. NT Botanical Bulletin No. 23, Parks and Wildlife Commission, Darwin.)