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New Zealand Journal of Forestry (1957) 7(4): 58–67
©New Zealand Institute of Forestry

Research article
The Use of New Zealand Grown Eucalypts

J.S. Reid

The very strong durable hardwoods imported from Australia for piles, poles, crossarms, sleepers and constructional timbers have long been recognized as the natural complement to our generous supplies of softwoods. High hopes held by many growers of eucalypts that New Zealand could become independent of the Australian supply have not been realized because climatic conditions do not favour the growing of the most highly-esteemed species. Four species whose timbers are grouped in the second and third strength and durability classes in Australia have been grown successfully in North Auckland, immediately south of Auckland and in isolated areas elsewhere; they are potentially useful for some of the purposes mentioned above.
There are numerous instances of plantings of very poor eucalypt species. Even with general utility species such as the "ash" group only a small proportion of the sawn product is suitable for finishing purposes and the lower grades have a limited market because softwood alternatives are in abundant supply.
On sites which are suitable for the growing of the better quality softwoods there is little justification for extensive plantings of general utility eucalypts for which the main indicated uses as sawn timber will be flooring, furniture, handles, farm and mine timbers and firewood. Relatively slow growth on "hard" country appears to result in better quality logs and sawn timber than are produced from trees grown rapidly on better quality land.

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