Cyathea australis (R.Br.) Domin

Rough Tree-fern

Pteridophyta Dominica 262 (1929) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Native

Trunk erect, to 15 m tall, 15–40 cm diam. at base. Fronds 2–4 m long. Stipe to 80 cm long, coarse, brown, shiny, with numerous small, sharp, conical tubercles; scales (at base) tapering, 1.5–5 cm long, coarse, glossy-brown, almost opaque, with fragile edges when young and each with a dark red seta at tip. Lamina subtriangular, 3-pinnate with lowest pinna-pair slightly shorter than rest, mid-green, paler underneath; primary and secondary pinnae oblong-lanceolate to narrowly oblong with acute to acuminate tips; lower surface of rachises with various scattered scales; those of ultimate rachises and midveins of pinnules, small, ovate, markedly inflated with hair-like tips or setae; upper surface of rachises with fine hairs. Pinnules attached by full breadth, decurrent, margins slightly crenulate to shallowly toothed. Sori with globular, hairy receptacle; indusia inconspicuous, consisting of a few, fringed scales at base of each receptacle.

CVU, EGL, EGU, GipP, Glep, Gold, GGr, HFE, HNF, HSF, MonT, NIS, OtP, OtR, SnM, Strz, VAlp, VVP, WaP, WPro. Also Qld, NSW, Tas. (including Bass Strait islands). Common in southern Victoria from near sea-level to mountain slopes, growing in shaded fern gullies and in the understorey of wet forest, virtually coextensive with, but usually in more exposed positions than Dicksonia antarctica.

The rough pimpled stipe-base and broad, mid-green fronds (somewhat yellowed in open sites) are characteristic of this species.

Source: Entwisle, T.J. (1994). Ferns and allied plants (Psilophyta, Lycopodiophyta, Polypodiophyta). In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 2, Ferns and Allied Plants, Conifers and Monocotyledons. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
order Cyatheales
family Cyatheaceae
genus Cyathea
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Cyathea australis in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Cyathea australis in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Glenelg Plain present native
Victorian Volcanic Plain present native
Gippsland Plain present native
Otway Plain present native
Warrnambool Plain present native
Goldfields present native
Central Victorian Uplands present native
Greater Grampians present native
Northern Inland Slopes present native
East Gippsland Lowlands present native
East Gippsland Uplands present native
Wilsons Promontory present native
Highlands-Southern Fall present native
Highlands-Northern Fall present native
Otway Ranges present native
Strzelecki Ranges present native
Monaro Tablelands present native
Highlands-Far East present native
Victorian Alps present native
Snowy Mountains present native

State distribution

Distribution map
South Australia
New South Wales
Australian Capital Territory